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[kuh-nahrd; French ka-nar] /kəˈnɑrd; French kaˈnar/
noun, plural canards
[kuh-nahrdz; French ka-nar] /kəˈnɑrdz; French kaˈnar/ (Show IPA)
a false or baseless, usually derogatory story, report, or rumor.
Cookery. a duck intended or used for food.
  1. an airplane that has its horizontal stabilizer and elevators located forward of the wing.
  2. Also called canard wing. one of two small lifting wings located in front of the main wings.
  3. an early airplane having a pusher engine with the rudder and elevator assembly in front of the wings.
Origin of canard
1840-50; < French: literally, duck; Old French quanart drake, orig. cackler, equivalent to can(er) to cackle (of expressive orig.) + -art -art, as in mallart drake; see mallard Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for canard
  • There's that canard again, from people who ought to know better.
  • And the canard about tenure making it difficult to fire teachers is ridiculous.
  • By repeating this false canard you provide an interesting example of the tide of misinformation.
  • The old there isn't enough cropland to replace oil is a canard as one doesn't have to replace all oil with any one fuel.
  • It is a canard that neither mainstream media's managers nor its journalists have good answers to that question.
  • The show demolishes a canard that the artist's work declined after the nineteen-fifties.
  • Then there's the old canard that the critics have it easy.
  • But the computer and an additional flight control device called the canard have rescued the delta wing from obsolescence.
British Dictionary definitions for canard


/kæˈnɑːd; French kanar/
a false report; rumour or hoax
an aircraft in which the tailplane is mounted in front of the wing
Word Origin
C19: from French: a duck, hoax, from Old French caner to quack, of imitative origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for canard

before 1850, from French canard "a hoax," literally "a duck" (from Old French quanart, probably echoic of a duck's quack); said by Littré to be from the phrase vendre un canard à moitié "to half-sell a duck," thus, from some long-forgotten joke, "to cheat."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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