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cen·​to ˈsen-(ˌ)tō How to pronounce cento (audio)
plural centones sen-ˈtō-(ˌ)nēz How to pronounce cento (audio)
: a literary work made up of parts from other works


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Central Treaty Organization

Examples of cento in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Her strikingly personal relationship with Mary — who appears in both the Quran and the Bible — becomes a profound and steadying compass, as do lines from many other poets and philosophers, woven into the text in cento style. Leila Chatti, New York Times, 5 Mar. 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'cento.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



Late Latin, from Latin, patchwork garment; perhaps akin to Sanskrit kanthā patched garment

First Known Use


circa 1529, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of cento was circa 1529

Dictionary Entries Near cento

Cite this Entry

“Cento.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cento. Accessed 27 Sep. 2023.

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