From canvas, originally meaning "to toss in a canvas sheet". First attested 1508
- Homophone: canvas
- A solicitation of voters or public opinion.
- A tally, audit and certification of votes.
- Archaic form of canvas.
- To solicit voters, opinions, etc. from; to go through, with personal solicitation or public addresses.
- to canvass a district for votes; to canvass a city for subscriptions
- To conduct a survey.
- To campaign.
- To sift; to strain; to examine thoroughly; to scrutinize.
- to canvass the votes cast at an election; to canvass a district with reference to its probable vote
- 1567, Arthur Golding (translator), The XV Bookes of P. Ouidius Naso, entytuled Metamorphosis, Book 1,
- And with the aunswere here vpon eftsoones in hand they go,
- The doubtfull wordes wherof they scan and canuas to and fro.
- 1631, William Watts (translator), Saint Augustines Confessions, London: John Partridge, Book 10, Chapter 40, pp. 709-710,
- […] taking some things vpon the report of my Sences, & working out other things that were of a mixt nature, by way of Dialogue with mine owne selfe; yea and taking particular notice and tale of the Reporters themselues; & anon throughly canuassing ouer those other things layd vp in the large treasury of my memory, storing vp some of them there againe, and for my vse drawing out the rest.
- 1695, John Woodward, An Essay toward a Natural History of the Earth and Terrestrial Bodies, London: Richard Wilkin, Part V, p. 228,
- I have made careful search on all hands, and canvass’d the Matter with all possible Diligence […]
- To examine by discussion; to debate.
- (obsolete) To toss in a canvas sheet; to thrash, beat.
- 1920, in the Classical Journal, volume 15, page 242:
- Some hunt "ponies" unrelentingly, others protest at intervals, most, perhaps, ignore the matter unless it is insolently forced upon their attention. How old this question was and how thoughtfully it had been canvassed we were not aware […]
- 2001, Joyce Carol Oates, Middle Age: A Romance, page 5
- Adam Berendt, who canvassed through Rockland County on behalf of education, environmental, and gun control bond issues.
to solicit voters
to conduct survey
to campaign — see campaign
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.