canton

1 of 2

noun (1)

can·​ton ˈkan-tᵊn How to pronounce canton (audio)
-ˌtän
: a small territorial division of a country: such as
a
: one of the states of the Swiss confederation
b
: a division of a French arrondissement
cantonal adjective

canton

2 of 2

noun (2)

1
obsolete : division, section
2
: the top inner quarter of a flag
3
: the dexter chief region of a heraldic field

Word History

Etymology

Noun (1)

Middle French, from Italian cantone, from canto corner, from Latin canthus iron tire — more at cant entry 4

Noun (2)

Middle French, from Old Occitan, from cant edge, corner, from Latin canthus

First Known Use

Noun (1)

1522, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

1572, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of canton was in 1522

Dictionary Entries Near canton

Cite this Entry

“Canton.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/canton. Accessed 6 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

canton

noun

can·​ton
ˈkant-ᵊn,
ˈkan-ˌtän
1
: a division of a country (as Switzerland)
2
: the top inner quarter of a flag

Geographical Definition

Canton

geographical name

Can·​ton ˈkan-tᵊn How to pronounce Canton (audio)
1
city in northeastern Ohio south-southeast of Akron population 73,007
2
see guangzhou

More from Merriam-Webster on canton

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