What does cant mean?

Definitions for cant

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word cant.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. buzzword, cant(noun)

    stock phrases that have become nonsense through endless repetition

  2. bank, cant, camber(noun)

    a slope in the turn of a road or track; the outside is higher than the inside in order to reduce the effects of centrifugal force

  3. slang, cant, jargon, lingo, argot, patois, vernacular(noun)

    a characteristic language of a particular group (as among thieves)

    "they don't speak our lingo"

  4. cant, pious platitude(noun)

    insincere talk about religion or morals

  5. bevel, cant, chamfer(verb)

    two surfaces meeting at an angle different from 90 degrees

  6. cant, cant over, tilt, slant, pitch(verb)

    heel over

    "The tower is tilting"; "The ceiling is slanting"


  1. cant(Contraction)

    cannot; is unable to; does not have the ability to

    I can't quite get it to work.

  2. cant(Contraction)

    is forbidden to; is not permitted to

    You can't enter the hall without a ticket.

  3. cant(Noun)

    corner, niche

  4. cant(Noun)

    slope, the angle at which something is set.

  5. cant

    A movement or throw that overturns something.

  6. cant(Verb)

    To set (something) at an angle.

  7. cant(Verb)

    To bevel an edge or corner.

  8. cant

    To overturn so that the contents are emptied.

  9. cant(Verb)

    To divide or parcel out.

  10. cant(Adjective)

    lively, lusty.

  11. Origin: From canto probably via canter, cognate with chant.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Cant(noun)

    a corner; angle; niche

  2. Cant(noun)

    an outer or external angle

  3. Cant(noun)

    an inclination from a horizontal or vertical line; a slope or bevel; a titl

  4. Cant(noun)

    a sudden thrust, push, kick, or other impulse, producing a bias or change of direction; also, the bias or turn so give; as, to give a ball a cant

  5. Cant(noun)

    a segment forming a side piece in the head of a cask

  6. Cant(noun)

    a segment of he rim of a wooden cogwheel

  7. Cant(noun)

    a piece of wood laid upon the deck of a vessel to support the bulkheads

  8. Cant(verb)

    to incline; to set at an angle; to tilt over; to tip upon the edge; as, to cant a cask; to cant a ship

  9. Cant(verb)

    to give a sudden turn or new direction to; as, to cant round a stick of timber; to cant a football

  10. Cant(verb)

    to cut off an angle from, as from a square piece of timber, or from the head of a bolt

  11. Cant(noun)

    an affected, singsong mode of speaking

  12. Cant(noun)

    the idioms and peculiarities of speech in any sect, class, or occupation

  13. Cant(noun)

    the use of religious phraseology without understanding or sincerity; empty, solemn speech, implying what is not felt; hypocrisy

  14. Cant(noun)

    vulgar jargon; slang; the secret language spoker by gipsies, thieves, tramps, or beggars

  15. Cant(adj)

    of the nature of cant; affected; vulgar

  16. Cant(verb)

    to speak in a whining voice, or an affected, singsong tone

  17. Cant(verb)

    to make whining pretensions to goodness; to talk with an affectation of religion, philanthropy, etc.; to practice hypocrisy; as, a canting fanatic

  18. Cant(verb)

    to use pretentious language, barbarous jargon, or technical terms; to talk with an affectation of learning

  19. Cant(noun)

    a call for bidders at a public sale; an auction

  20. Cant(verb)

    to sell by auction, or bid a price at a sale by auction

  21. Origin: [Prob. from OF. cant, F. chant, singing, in allusion to the singing or whining tine of voice used by beggars, fr. L. cantus. See Chant.]


  1. Cant

    A cant is the jargon or argot of a group, often implying its use to exclude or mislead people outside the group.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Cant

    kant, v.i. to speak in a conventional manner: to use the language of thieves, &c.: to talk in an affectedly solemn or hypocritical way.—n. a hypocritical or affected style of speech: the language peculiar to a sect: odd or peculiar talk of any kind: slang: a common saying: affected use of religious phrases or sentiments.—n. Cant′er, one who cants, a beggar: one who makes hypocritical professions.—adj. Cant′ing, whining, pretending to piety: (her.) allusive (see Allusive). [L. cantāre, freq. of canĕre, to sing.]

  2. Cant

    kant, n. an inclination from the level: a toss or jerk: a sloping or tilted position: one of the segments forming a side-piece in the head of a cask: a ship's timber lying obliquely to the line of the keel.—v.t. to turn on the edge or corner: to tilt or toss suddenly.—ns. Cant′ing, tilting; Cant′ing-coin; Cant′ing-wheel; Cant′-rail, a timber running along the tops of the upright pieces in the sides of the body of a railway-carriage and supporting the roof and roof-sticks. [Prob. conn. with Dut. kant; Ger. kante, corner.]

  3. Cant

    kant, n. sale by auction.—v.t. to sell by auction. [O. Fr. encant, auction; der. uncertain, cf. Low L. incantāre, to put up to auction.]

  4. Cant

    kant, adj. brisk: lively. [Scot.; der. unknown. See Canty.]

The Nuttall Encyclopedia

  1. Cant

    affectation of thinking, believing, and feeling what one in his heart and reality does not, of which there are two degrees, insincere and sincere; insincere when one cants knowing it, and sincere when one cants without knowing it, the latter being of the darker and deeper dye.

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. cant

    A cut made in a whale between the neck and the fins, to which the cant-purchase is made fast, for turning the animal round in the operation of flensing.

Suggested Resources

  1. cant

    Song lyrics by cant -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by cant on the Lyrics.com website.

  2. CANT

    What does CANT stand for? -- Explore the various meanings for the CANT acronym on the Abbreviations.com website.

Etymology and Origins

  1. Cant

    After Alexander and Andrew Cant, a couple of bigoted Covenanters, who persecuted their religious opponents with relentless zeal, and at the same time prayed for those who suffered on account of their religious opinions.

How to pronounce cant?

  1. Alex
    US English

How to say cant in sign language?

  1. cant


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of cant in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of cant in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Examples of cant in a Sentence

  1. President Trump:

    They get three constitutional lawyers ... and we get one, thats not sounding too good, and thats the way it is. We dont get a lawyer, we dont get any witnesses -- we want Biden, we want the son Hunter, wheres Hunter? We want Schiff. We want to interview these people. Well, they said no. We cant do it.

  2. John Conyers:

    My legacy cant be compromised or diminished in any way by what were going through now, this, too, shall pass. My legacy will continue through my children.

  3. President Donald Trump:

    Nine months from now, we are going to retake the House of Representatives, we are going to hold the Senate, and we are going to keep the White House, we have so much more enthusiasm, its not even close. Theyre all fighting each other. ... They dont know what theyre doing; they cant even count their votes.

  4. Jennifer Love Hewitt:

    This is me forever..bawling my eyes out. Cant believe what happened, my dad whispered you made itbefore I walked up and I lost it. I love my family so much. Without them I wouldnt be here today. Thank you to my team and everyone who got me here. Gonna cry happy tears all night. AHHHHHH.

  5. Jay Sullivan:

    Know the room and your role, why you are in the meeting, if it's your manager interrupting, your job is not to try and step in over the manager and regain your voice. You cant publicly challenge the boss in the meeting. That isn't going to work.

Images & Illustrations of cant

  1. cantcantcantcantcant

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Translations for cant

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • лицеме́рие, преобръщане, накланям, окантвам, жарго́н, наклонBulgarian
  • argotCatalan, Valencian
  • Phrase, Rotwelsch, Jargon, kippen, Gaunersprache, Fachsprache, abschrägen, kanten, Redendes Wappen, PhrasendrescherreiGerman
  • coa, argot, jergaSpanish
  • höpöpuhe, jargon, hurskastelu, slangi, kaltevuus, kallistaa, mankuminenFinnish
  • langue de bois, argot, armes parlantes, lamentation, lange de boisFrench
  • tolvajnyelv, képmutatás, zsargonHungarian
  • 傾斜, 隠語, 斜面Japanese
  • Bargoens, vaktaal, helling, sprekend wapen, huicheltaal, bedelaarsgekerm, neigen, boeventaal, jargonDutch
  • código, jargãoPortuguese
  • ха́нжество, [[та́йный]] [[язы́к]], [[блатно́й]] [[язы́к]], кантовать, жарго́н, перевёртывание, нытьё, лицеме́рие, фе́няRussian
  • jargonTurkish

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"cant." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 3 Apr. 2020. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/cant>.

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