That yellow police tape and group of officers encircling the crime scene? That's a kind of cordon — something set up to guard something.

  • Pronunciation: /'kɔrdn/
  • English description: a series of sentinels or of military posts enclosing or guarding some place or thing
  • Synonyms: series
  • Chinese Translation:  警戒线(jing3 jie4 xian4)
  • Spanish Translation: el cordón
  • ORIGIN: A cordon can also mean some kind of ornament or adornment made out of ribbon or cord, usually worn by military folks to signify honor or rank. Not surprising since cordon sounds similar to cord and comes from the old French word for the same thing. But unless you're part of a security team or often dressed in full military regalia, you probably won't come into contact with cordons very often.


  • Police have taken tough security measures for Thursday’s game, deploying 1,500 officers, and enforcing a huge traffic cordon around the stadium.
  • The recording was made at the police cordon and accompanied by an inappropriate and offensive message.

*New word description, story and part of "EXAMPLE SENTENCE" are cited in