Canis Major

noun (1)
Ca·​nis Ma·​jor | \ ˌkā-nəs-ˈmā-jər How to pronounce Canis Major (audio) , ˌka-\

Definition of Canis Major

 (Entry 1 of 4)

: a constellation to the southeast of Orion containing Sirius

Canis Minor

noun (2)
Canis Mi·​nor | \ ˌkā-nəs-ˈmī-nər How to pronounce Canis Minor (audio) , ˌka-\

Definition of Canis Minor (Entry 2 of 4)

: a constellation to the east of Orion containing Procyon

Alpha Canis Majoris

noun (3)
Alpha Canis Ma·​jor·​is | \ -mə-ˈjȯr-əs How to pronounce Alpha Canis Majoris (audio) \

Definition of Alpha Canis Majoris (Entry 3 of 4)

astronomy
: sirius

Alpha Canis Minoris

noun (4)
Alpha Canis Mi·​nor·​is | \ -mī-ˈnȯr-əs How to pronounce Alpha Canis Minoris (audio) \

Definition of Alpha Canis Minoris (Entry 4 of 4)

astronomy
: procyon

First Known Use of Canis Major

Noun (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Noun (3)

1860, in the meaning defined above

Noun (4)

1860, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for Canis Major

Noun (1)

Latin (genitive Canis Majoris), literally, greater dog

Noun (2)

Latin (genitive Canis Minoris), literally, lesser dog

Noun (3)

borrowed from New Latin, “Alpha of Canis Major”

Noun (4)

borrowed from New Latin, “Alpha of Canis Minor”

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about Canis Major

Statistics for Canis Major

Time Traveler for Canis Major

The first known use of Canis Major was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

More from Merriam-Webster on Canis Major

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with Canis Major

Comments on Canis Major

What made you want to look up Canis Major? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a calculated move

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Confusing Words—A Quiz

  • alice with tweedle dee and tweedle dum
  • I invented a brand new toaster robot and ______ it "Sir Toasts-a-Lot."
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!