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Canisters of 35mm camera film


From Middle English canister, canustyr, a borrowing from Latin canistrum.



canister (plural canisters)

  1. A cylindrical or rectangular container usually of lightweight metal, plastic, or laminated pasteboard used for holding a dry product (as tea, crackers, flour, matches).
    • 1963, Margery Allingham, “Foreword”, in The China Governess[1]:
      Everything a living animal could do to destroy and to desecrate bed and walls had been done. […]  A canister of flour from the kitchen had been thrown at the looking-glass and lay like trampled snow over the remains of a decent blue suit with the lining ripped out which lay on top of the ruin of a plastic wardrobe.
  2. Any of various cylindrical metal receptacles usually with a removable close-fitting top.
  3. A special short range antipersonnel projectile consisting of a casing of light metal, loaded with preformed submissiles such as flechettes or steel balls. The casing is designed to open just beyond the muzzle of the weapon, dispersing the submissiles.
  4. A component of canister type protective mask containing a mechanical filter and chemical filling to filter, neutralize and/or absorb toxic chemical, biological and radiological agents.
  5. A projectile component containing colored or screening smoke or riot control agent composition.


  • Irish: ceanastar



canister (third-person singular simple present canisters, present participle canistering, simple past and past participle canistered)

  1. (transitive) To pack into a canister.