Abused, Confused, & Misused Words by Mary Embree Copyright © 2007, 2013 by Mary Embree
1. Angular deviation from a vertical or horizontal plane or surface; an inclination or slope.
2. A slanted or oblique surface.
a. A thrust or motion that tilts something.
b. The tilt caused by such a thrust or motion.
4. An outer corner, as of a building.
v. cant·ed, cant·ing, cants
1. To set at an oblique angle; tilt.
2. To give a slanting edge to; bevel.
3. To change the direction of suddenly.
1. To lean to one side; slant.
2. To take an oblique direction or course; swing around, as a ship.
[Middle English, side, from Old North French, from Vulgar Latin *cantus, corner, from Latin canthus, rim of wheel, tire, of Celtic origin.]
1. Tedious or hackneyed language, especially when used sanctimoniously: “a merciless onslaught upon the cant of the age, the cant about progress, equality, [and] universal education” (C. Vann Woodward).
a. The special vocabulary peculiar to the members of an underworld group; argot.
b. The special vocabulary of a profession, discipline, or social group; jargon.
4. Whining or singsong speech, such as that used by beggars.
1. To speak tediously or sanctimoniously.
2. To speak in argot or jargon.
3. To speak in a whining or singsong voice.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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
(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]
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. (Building) a corner or outer angle, esp of a building
5. an oblique or slanting surface, edge, or line
6. to tip, tilt, or overturn, esp with a sudden jerk
7. (Mechanical Engineering) to set in an oblique position
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]
dialect Scot and Northern English lusty; merry; hearty
[C14: related to Low German kant bold, merry]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
1. insincere or hypocritical statements, esp. pious platitudes.
2. the private language of the underworld.
3. the words and phrases peculiar to a particular class, profession, etc.
4. whining or singsong speech.
5. to talk piously or hypocritically.
6. to beg in a whining or singsong tone.
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 or cube.
6. a sudden pitch or toss.
8. oblique or slanting.
9. to bevel; form an oblique surface upon.
10. to put in an oblique position; tilt; tip.
11. to throw with a sudden jerk.
12. to take or have an inclined position; tilt; turn.
[1325–75; Middle English: side, border < Anglo-French cant, Old French chant]
contraction of cannot.
Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
Past participle: canted
Collins English Verb Tables © HarperCollins Publishers 2011
A specialized vocabulary used among a particular group of people.
Dictionary of Unfamiliar Words by Diagram Group Copyright © 2008 by Diagram Visual Information Limited