canny

[kan-ee]
adjective, cannier, canniest.
1.
careful; cautious; prudent: a canny reply.
2.
astute; shrewd; knowing; sagacious: a canny negotiator.
3.
skilled; expert.
4.
frugal; thrifty: a canny housewife.
5.
Scot.
a.
safe to deal with, invest in, or work at (usually used with a negative).
b.
gentle; careful; steady.
c.
snug; cozy; comfortable.
d.
pleasing; attractive.
e.
Archaic. having supernatural or occult powers.
adverb Also, cannily.
6.
in a canny manner.
7.
Scot. carefully; cautiously.

Origin:
1630–40; can1 + -y1

canniness, noun
overcanny, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To canny
Collins
World English Dictionary
canny (ˈkænɪ)
 
adj , -nier, -niest
1.  shrewd, esp in business; astute or wary; knowing
2.  dialect (Scot), (Northeast English) good or nice: used as a general term of approval
3.  (Scot) lucky or fortunate
 
adv
4.  dialect (Scot), (Northeast English) quite; rather: a canny long while
 
[C16: from can1 (in the sense: to know how) + -y1]
 
'cannily
 
adv
 
'canniness
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Etymonline
Word Origin & History

canny
1630s, Scottish and northern England formation from can (v.) in its sense of "know how to." Often used superciliously of Scots by their southern neighbors, implying "thrift and an eye to the main chance."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Example sentences
Usually my fellow runners are clever if not intellectual, canny if not bookish.
He has found some canny ways to tempt them to settle.
He has proved that he can still play trumpet with the ghostly tone and canny
  timing that established him in the jazz pantheon.
Felicity not only has perfect foresight, she has also been canny enough to
  dodge taxes.
Related Words
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature
FAVORITES
RECENT

;