WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2016
co•tan•gent  (kō tanjənt, kōtan′-), 
n. [Trig.]
  1. Mathematics(in a right triangle) the ratio of the side adjacent to a given angle to the side opposite.
  2. Mathematicsthe tangent of the complement, or the reciprocal of the tangent, of a given angle or arc. Abbr.: cot, ctn 
  Also,co•tan  (kōtan′). 
Etymology:1625–35; Neo-Latin cotangent- (stem of cotangēns). See co-, tangent
co•tan•gen•tial  (kō′tan jenshəl), 

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

cotangent /kəʊˈtændʒənt/ n
  1. (of an angle) a trigonometric function that in a right-angled triangle is the ratio of the length of the adjacent side to that of the opposite side; the reciprocal of tangent

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