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Explanation: This is not Latin but rather Italian. The form is a participle in the plural form meaning, loosely, "knowing". It has become a loan word from Italian into English, specifying people who are "in the know", who are savvy about a political or artistic or cultural situation. But it almost never refers to people who know about technical or scholastic matters.
Explanation: cognoscente, pl. -ti: "A conoisseur"
This word is used in English, almost always in the plural. I think "people in the know" connotes those informed about a particular situation rather than knowledgeable about a subject.