cane

noun
\ ˈkān How to pronounce cane (audio) \

Definition of cane

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a(1) : a hollow or pithy, usually slender, and often flexible jointed stem (as of a reed or bamboo) a fishing pole made of cane
(2) : any of various slender woody stems especially : an elongated flowering or fruiting stem (as of a rose) usually arising directly from the ground
b : any of various tall woody grasses or reeds: such as
(1) : any of a genus (Arundinaria) of bamboo
(2) : sugarcane
(3) : sorghum
c : rattan sense 2b especially : split rattan for wickerwork or basketwork
2 : a stick typically of wood or metal with a usually curved handle at one end that is grasped to provide stability in walking or standing
3 : a rod or stick used for flogging
4 : a tiny glass rod used in decorative glasswork (as in millefiori and paperweights)

cane

verb
caned; caning

Definition of cane (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to beat with a cane he sat in a professor's chair and caned sophomores for blowing spitballs— H. L. Mencken
2 : to weave or furnish with cane cane the seat of a chair

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Synonyms for cane

Synonyms: Noun

bastinado (or bastinade), bat, baton, billy, billy club, bludgeon, club, cudgel, nightstick, rod, rung [Scottish], sap, shillelagh (also shillalah), staff, truncheon, waddy [Australian]

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Examples of cane in a Sentence

Noun

In the past, some teachers would resort to the cane when students misbehaved. The chair seat is made of cane.

Verb

In the past, some teachers would cane students who misbehaved.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Sugar cane and other farming led to phosphate pollution, which changed the region’s flora. Gena Steffens, Smithsonian, "The Snakes That Ate Florida," 11 July 2019 Maintain healthy foliage The rosebush needs its leaves for the production of energy and also to provide shade for the canes and the base of the bush. Rita Perwich, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Water needs for roses rise with summer temperatures," 11 July 2019 Not far from Abu Sido’s workshop is Khalaf’s Carpentry, known for making prized cane and bamboo furniture. Washington Post, "Gaza’s traditional crafts industries rapidly disappearing," 10 July 2019 In 1828, Monroe sold up to two dozen enslaved people for $5,000 to Joseph Mills White, the owner of Casa Bianca, a cane and cotton plantation just outside Monticello, Fla., to pay off mounting debt after his presidency. New York Times, "James Monroe Enslaved Hundreds. Their Descendants Still Live Next Door.," 7 July 2019 Knievel, who walks with the aid of a cane and sometimes a crutch, has another reason for the soar through the air. San Diego Union-Tribune, "From the Archives: 1969: Evel Knievel at the Carlsbad Raceway," 21 June 2019 This could cripple livelihoods across the predominantly agricultural country, where 80% of water is used to irrigate thirsty crops such as sugar cane and rice. Jessie Yeung, Helen Regan And Swati Gupta, CNN, "India's sixth biggest city is almost entirely out of water," 19 June 2019 The toll of the sport is visible and tangible in the alumni’s slow gaits and limps, and canes and wheelchairs. Kalyn Kahler, SI.com, "The Bears at 100: Cheers and a Few Tears," 11 June 2019 What a joy to wander outside after writing a column, only to discover the raspberry patch has already been cleaned of last year’s canes and this year’s have been properly pruned and primed. Jeff Lowenfels, Anchorage Daily News, "I insisted on keeping a tight grip on the garden. Then I let my wife help.," 6 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Cane’s marinates never-frozen chicken tenderloins for 24 hours before dropping it in the fryer. Andy Staples, SI.com, "Where to eat, drink in Baton Rouge," 30 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cane.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cane

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

Verb

1662, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cane

Noun

Middle English, from Middle French, from Old Occitan cana, from Latin canna, from Greek kanna, of Semitic origin; akin to Akkadian qanū reed, Hebrew qāneh

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Statistics for cane

Last Updated

16 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cane

The first known use of cane was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for cane

cane

noun

English Language Learners Definition of cane

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a short stick that often has a curved handle and is used to help someone to walk
: a form of punishment in which a person is hit with a cane or stick
: the hard hollow stem of a plant (such as bamboo or reed) that is used to make furniture and baskets

cane

verb

English Language Learners Definition of cane (Entry 2 of 2)

: to hit (someone) with a cane or stick as a form of punishment

cane

noun
\ ˈkān How to pronounce cane (audio) \

Kids Definition of cane

1 : an often hollow, slender, and somewhat flexible plant stem
2 : a tall woody grass or reed (as sugarcane)
3 : a rod made especially of wood or metal that often has a curved handle and is used to help someone walk
4 : a rod for beating

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More from Merriam-Webster on cane

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cane

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cane

Spanish Central: Translation of cane

Nglish: Translation of cane for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cane for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about cane

Comments on cane

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