- (Received Pronunciation, General American) IPA(key): /ˈkænvəs/
- (Nigeria) IPA(key): /ˈkænvæs/
Audio (Southern England) (file) Audio (GA) (file)
- Homophone: canvass
- Hyphenation: can‧vas
From Middle English canevas, from Anglo-Norman, from Old Northern French canevas (compare Old French chanevas, chenevas) from a root derived from Latin cannabis, from Ancient Greek κάνναβις (kánnabis). Compare French canevas, resulting from a blend of the Old French and a Picard dialect word, itself from Old Northern French. Doublet of cannabis and hemp.
- A type of coarse cloth, woven from hemp, useful for making sails and tents or as a surface for paintings.
- 1882, James Edwin Thorold Rogers, A History of Agriculture and Prices in England, volume 4, page 556:
- The term canvas is very widely used, as well to denote the coarse fabrics employed for kitchen use, as for strainers, and wraps for meat, as for the best quality of ordinary table and shirting linen.
- A piece of canvas cloth stretched across a frame on which one may paint.
- A painting, or a picture on canvas.
- 1764 December 19 (indicated as 1765), Oliver Goldsmith, The Traveller, or A Prospect of Society. A Poem. […], London: […] J[ohn] Newbery, […], →OCLC:
- The canvas glowed, beyond e'en nature warm
- 1849–1861, Thomas Babington Macaulay, chapter 13, in The History of England from the Accession of James the Second, volumes (please specify |volume=I to V), London: Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans, →OCLC:
- Light, rich as that which glows on the canvas of Claude.
- A mesh of loosely woven cotton strands or molded plastic to be decorated with needlepoint, cross-stitch, rug hooking, or other crafts.
- (figuratively) A basis for creative work.
- The author takes rural midwestern life as a canvas for a series of tightly woven character studies
- (computer graphics) A region on which graphics can be rendered.
- (nautical) Sails in general.
- 1785 August, Benjamin Franklin, “On Improvements in Navigation”, in Jared Sparks, editor, Memoirs of the Life and Writings of Benjamin Franklin, […], volume III, London: […] [Abraham John Valpy] for Henry Colburn, […], published 1818, →OCLC, part IV (Philosophical Subjects), page 525:
- The double desire of being able to overtake a weaker flying enemy, or to escape when pursued by a stronger, has induced the owners to overmast their cruisers, and to spread too much canvass; and the great number of men, many of them not seamen, who being upon deck when a ship heels suddenly are huddled down to leeward, and increase by their weight the effect of the wind.
- A tent.
- He spent the night under canvas.
- A rough draft or model of a song, air, or other literary or musical composition; especially one to show a poet the measure of the verses he is to make.
- (Nigeria) Athletic shoes.
The plural canvases is used in the US, while the plural canvasses is sometimes incorrectly used in the UK and some UK-influenced areas. All major British dictionaries (Oxford, Cambridge, Collins and Chambers) agree that ‘canvases’ is the correct form.
- canvass (obsolete)
A variant of canvass.
- Obsolete spelling of [16th–18th c.]
- 1577, Raphaell Holinshed, “Queene Elizabeth”, in The Laste Volume of the Chronicles of England, Scotlande, and Irelande […], volume II, London: […] for Iohn Hunne, →OCLC, pages 1844–1845:
- But nowe the Meſſenger that was thus ſent to the Lorde Hume [Alexander Home, 5th Lord Home], comming to him declared in what caſe hys houſe and people ſtoode, who beeing (as was ſuppoſed) not ſo farre off, but that he might heare howe luſtily the Engliſhe Canons did canuas and batter his Humiſhe Caſtell Walles, did nowe agree to meete the Marshall maiſter Drurie [William Drury] two myles diſtant from the ſayde Caſtell, and there to common further with him in that matter.
- 1591 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The First Part of Henry the Sixt”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies […] (First Folio), London: […] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act I, scene iii], page 99, column 1:
- Thou that giu'ſt VVhores Indulgences to ſinne, / Ile canuas thee in thy broad Cardinalls Hat, / If thou proceed in this thy inſolence.
- a. 1661 (date written), H[enry] Hammond, “Sect IV. Of the Holy Catholick Church.”, in A Practical Catechism […], 7th edition, London: […] J. F. for R[ichard] Royston, […], published 1662, →OCLC, book V, page 354:
- [T]he nature of man, created after the Image of God, I mean, his Reaſonable nature, hath ſuch an agreement and liking to all that is ſubſtantially and really good, (ſuch are all the Commands of the Natural and Chriſtian Law) that it ſtill canvaſeth on that ſide, and ſolicites the will to embrace the good, and prefer it before the pleaſurable evil; […]
- 1691, [Anthony Wood], “WILLIAM LENTHALL”, in Athenæ Oxonienses. An Exact History of All the Writers and Bishops who have had Their Education in the Most Ancient and Famous University of Oxford from the Fifteenth Year of King Henry the Seventh, Dom. 1500, to the End of the Year 1690. […], volume II (Completing the Whole Work), London: […] Tho[mas] Bennet […], →OCLC, column 204:
- [H]e endeavoured by his Agents to be choſe a Burgeſs for the Univerſity of Oxon, to ſerve in that Parliament vvhich began at VVeſtm[inster] 25 Apr. 1660, as at one or tvvo places beſides, vvhere he had canvas'd for votes; […]
canvas (plural canvases)
- Obsolete spelling of [17th–18th c.]
- 1611, Joseph Hall, “Epistle IIII. To My Lady Honoria Hay. Discoursing of the Necessity of Baptisme; and the Estate of Those which Necessarily Want It.”, in Epistles […], volume III, London: […] [William Stansby and William Jaggard] for Samuell Macham, […], →OCLC, 5th decade, pages 54–55:
- […] I haue learned this faſhion of St. Hierome the Oracle of Antiquitie, vvho vvas vvont to entertaine his Paula, and Euſtochium, Marcella, Principia, Hedibia, and other deuout Ladies, vvith learned canuaſes of the deep pointes of Diuinity.
- 1624, Democritus Junior [pseudonym; Robert Burton], “Concupiscible Appetite, as Desires, Ambitions, Causes”, in The Anatomy of Melancholy: […], 2nd edition, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Printed by John Lichfield and James Short, for Henry Cripps, →OCLC, partition 1, section 2, member 3, subsection 11, page 100:
- It is a wonder to ſee how ſlauiſhly theſe kinde of [ambitious] men will ſubiect themſelues, vvhen they are about a canvas, to euery inferiour perſon, vvhat paines they vvill take, runne, ride, caſt, plot & countermine, proteſt & ſvveare, vow, promiſe, vvhat labours vndergoe, earely vp, dovvne late; […]
- 1624, Democritus Junior [pseudonym; Robert Burton], “Against Repulse, Abuses, Iniuries, Contempts, Disgraces, Contumelies, Slanders, Scoffes, &c.”, in The Anatomy of Melancholy: […], 2nd edition, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Printed by John Lichfield and James Short, for Henry Cripps, →OCLC, partition 2, section 3, member 7, page 287:
- But vvhy ſhouldſt thou take thy Canvas ſo to heart? It may bee thou art not fit. But as a childe that vveares his fathers ſhooes, hat, headpeece, breſtplate, or breeches; or holds his ſpeare, but is nether able to vveild the one, or vveare the other; ſo vvouldſt thou doe by ſuch an office or Magiſtracy, thou art vnfit.
- 1626 (first performance; published 1652), James Shirley, “The Brothers”, in William Gifford and Alexander Dyce, editors, The Dramatic Works and Poems of James Shirley, […], volume I, London: John Murray, […], published 1833, →OCLC, Act I, scene i, page 206:
- And now I'll tell thee, I have promis'd him / As much as marriage comes to, and I lose / My honour, if my don receive the canvas.
- 1790 November, Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France, and on the Proceedings in Certain Societies in London Relative to that Event. […], London: […] J[ames] Dodsley, […], →OCLC, page 219:
- I know well enough that the biſhoprics and cures, under kingly and ſeignoral patronage, as now they are in England, and as they have been lately in France, are ſometimes acquired by unworthy methods; but the other mode of eccleſiaſtical canvas ſubjects them infinitely more ſurely and more generally to all the evil arts of low ambition, which, operating on and through greater numbers, will produce miſchief in proportion.
canvas n (plural canvassen)
canvas m (invariable)
- (graphical user interface) canvas (area on which graphics are rendered)
- (business) business model canvas