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According to Dictionary.com, Cognition is defined as:
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  1. the act or process of knowing; perception.
  2. the product of such a process; something thus known, perceived, etc.
  3. knowledge.

Given the breadth of this field, it is difficult to summarize the essence of cognition. It is the branch of psychology which most lends itself to a philosophical treatment, and yet science is constantly codifying and dissecting our every thought. While cognition examines many of the fields you see on the side-bar, albeit with a slightly different emphasis, there are a few fields of study which are most commonly associated with cognition. Foremost amongst these is language, and it is with this that we shall begin our study of knowledge.