cant

1 [kant]
noun
1.
insincere, especially conventional expressions of enthusiasm for high ideals, goodness, or piety.
2.
the private language of the underworld.
3.
the phraseology peculiar to a particular class, party, profession, etc.: the cant of the fashion industry.
4.
whining or singsong speech, especially of beggars.
verb (used without object)
5.
to talk hypocritically.
6.
to speak in the whining or singsong tone of a beggar; beg.

Origin:
1495–1505; < Latin base cant- in cantus song, canticus singsong, etc., whence Old English cantere singer, cantic song; see chant

cantingly, adverb

cant, jargon, slang.


1. hypocrisy, sham, pretense, humbug.
Dictionary.com Unabridged

cant

2 [kant]
noun
1.
a salient angle.
2.
a sudden movement that tilts or overturns a thing.
3.
a slanting or tilted position.
4.
an oblique line or surface, as one formed by cutting off the corner of a square of cube.
5.
an oblique or slanting face of anything.
6.
Civil Engineering, bank1 ( def 6 ).
7.
a sudden pitch or toss.
8.
Also called flitch. a partly trimmed log.
adjective
9.
oblique or slanting.
verb (used with object)
10.
to bevel; form an oblique surface upon.
11.
to put in an oblique position; tilt; tip.
12.
to throw with a sudden jerk.
verb (used without object)
13.
to take or have an inclined position; tilt; turn.

Origin:
1325–75; Middle English: side, border < Anglo-French cant, Old French chant < a Romance base *cantu(m) with the related senses “rim, border” and “angle corner,” probably < Celtic; compare Latin cant(h)us iron tire (< Celtic), Welsh cant periphery, rim, felloe; probably not akin to Greek kanthós corner of the eye; cf. canteen, cantle, canton

cantic, adjective

cant

3 [kahnt]
adjective Scot. and North England.
hearty; merry.

Origin:
1250–1300; Middle English < Low German kant merry, bold

can't

[kant, kahnt]
contraction of cannot.
can't, cant, Kant.


See can1, cannot, contraction.

Cant.

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
cant1 (kænt)
 
n
1.  insincere talk, esp concerning religion or morals; pious platitudes
2.  stock phrases that have become meaningless through repetition
3.  specialized vocabulary of a particular group, such as thieves, journalists, or lawyers; jargon
4.  singsong whining speech, as used by beggars
 
vb
5.  (intr) to speak in or use cant
 
[C16: probably via Norman French canter to sing, from Latin cantāre; used disparagingly, from the 12th century, of chanting in religious services]
 
'canter1
 
n
 
'cantingly1
 
adv

cant2 (kænt)
 
n
1.  inclination from a vertical or horizontal plane; slope; slant
2.  a sudden movement that tilts or turns something
3.  the angle or tilt thus caused
4.  a corner or outer angle, esp of a building
5.  an oblique or slanting surface, edge, or line
 
vb
6.  to tip, tilt, or overturn, esp with a sudden jerk
7.  to set in an oblique position
8.  another word for bevel
 
adj
9.  oblique; slanting
10.  having flat surfaces and without curves
 
[C14 (in the sense: edge, corner): perhaps from Latin canthus iron hoop round a wheel, of obscure origin]
 
'cantic2
 
adj

cant3 (kɑːnt)
 
adj
dialect (Scot), (Northern English) lusty; merry; hearty
 
[C14: related to Low German kant bold, merry]

Cant.
 
abbreviation for
1.  Canterbury
2.  Bible Canticles

can't (kɑːnt)
 
contraction of
cannot

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Dictionary.com's 21st Century Lexicon
Main Entry:  cant1
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  the characteristic or secret language of a particular group
Etymology:  Latin cantus 'song, chant'
Main Entry:  cant1
Part of Speech:  v
Definition:  to bevel off; to put into an oblique position
Etymology:  Dutch, German kanten
Usage:  transitive
Main Entry:  cant2
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  phrases that have been endlessly repeated and have lost impact and meaning; a type of phraseology, such as affected and insincere religious speech
Etymology:  Latin cantus 'song, chant'
Main Entry:  cant2
Part of Speech:  v
Definition:  to tilt, incline, or turn upside-down
Etymology:  Dutch, German kanten
Usage:  transitive
Main Entry:  cant3
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  whiny speech
Etymology:  Latin cantus 'song, chant'
Main Entry:  cant3
Part of Speech:  v
Definition:  to speak in a jargon or secret language; to use a phraseology particular to a group
Etymology:  Latin cantus 'song, chant'
Usage:  transitive
Main Entry:  cant4
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  vulgar slang
Etymology:  Latin cantus 'song, chant'
Main Entry:  cant4
Part of Speech:  v
Definition:  to speak whiningly or affectedly
Etymology:  Latin cantus 'song, chant'
Usage:  transitive
Main Entry:  cant5
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  a slope in the turn of a road or track where the outside is higher; tilt
Etymology:  Celtic
Main Entry:  cant5
Part of Speech:  v
Definition:  to dispose of by auction
Etymology:  Latin accantare 'to put up to auction'
Usage:  transitive
Main Entry:  cant6
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  a slanting or oblique line, edge, or surface
Etymology:  Celtic
Main Entry:  cant7
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  an auction
Etymology:  Latin accantare 'to put up to auction'
Dictionary.com's 21st Century Lexicon
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

cant
"insincere talk," 1709, earlier, slang for "whining of beggars," (1560s), from O.N.Fr. canter "to sing, chant" from L. cantare, freq. of canere "to sing" (see chant). Sense in English developed after 1680 to mean the jargon of criminals and vagabonds, then applied contemptuously
by any sect or school to the phraseology of its rival.

cant
"slant," late 14c., Scottish, from O.N.Fr. cant (perhaps via M.L.G. kante or M.Du. kant), from V.L. *canthus, from L. cantus "iron tire of a wheel," possibly from a Celt. word meaning "rim of wheel, edge," from PIE base *kantho- "corner, bend" (cf. Gk. kanthos "corner of the eye").

can't
1706, contraction of cannot.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
Cant.
  1. Canterbury

  2. Canticle of Canticles

  3. Cantonese

The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
It seems to me when workers dont have jobs, the economy cant function as those
  workers can not spend money.
Constructive suggestions are rare in a debate that has mixed a lot of
  rhetorical cant with a big principle.
Recruitment was supported by alluring spiritual benefits as well as cant.
We try to hold on to some moral thread and cant help being full of pride.
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