(plural: ‘cousins‘; pronunciation: the letter ‘c’ is said with a ‘k’ sound)
(family relationship) a child of one’s uncle or aunt: the ‘first cousin’/’full cousin’ is the child of a person’s uncle or aunt; the ‘second cousin’ is the child of a person’s parents’ first cousin, and the ‘third cousin’ is the child of a person’s parents’ second cousin;
an informal way of addressing a person belonging to the same group, community, social rank, interests or country of the person addressing,
Though they are cousins, John and Pamela don’t like each other; they always quarrel and tell on each other.
It is a bit tricky to understand the difference between first cousin, second cousin, third cousin and so on, and to further complicate the things, we have such additions as ‘once removed’ and ‘twice removed’ and so on; however, just to sum up, the simpler way to remember ‘cousin relationship’ can be that ‘your mother’s “first cousin” is your “second cousin once removed”!
When a person says “our Australian cousins”, the person is supposed to be from England because most of the first Australian European settlers were from England and so the present English people feel that they are distant relatives of the present Australians in one way or the other.
Note: ‘Cousins’, always with a capital ‘C’ and with an ‘s’, is often found in the names of people, e.g. Joseph Cousins, William Cousins, Lillian Cousins, etc.