noun, plural cantos.
one of the main or larger divisions of a long poem.

1580–90; < Italian < Latin cant(us) singing, song, equivalent to can(ere) to sing + -tus suffix of v. action; cf. cant1, chant Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
canto (ˈkæntəʊ)
n , pl -tos
1.  music another word for cantus
2.  a main division of a long poem
[C16: from Italian: song, from Latin cantus, from canere to sing]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

1580s, from L. cantus "song" (see chant). As "a section of a long poem," used in Italian by Dante, in English first by Spenser.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences for cantos
It is the longest of all the cantos and has an unusual beginning.
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