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[kan-ter] /ˈkæn tər/
an easy gallop.
verb (used with or without object)
to move or ride at a canter.
Origin of canter1
First recorded in 1745-55; short for Canterbury to ride at a pace like that of Canterbury pilgrims Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for cantering
Historical Examples
  • "You'll change your mind shortly," said Cousin Frank, cantering ahead to open a gate in the rail fence.

    When Grandmamma Was New Marion Harland
  • "Colomba, you're talking nonsense," said Orso, cantering forward.

    Columba Prosper Merimee
  • Five minutes later the whole party were cantering down the valley.

    Redskin and Cow-Boy G. A. (George Alfred) Henty
  • You may scare them into cantering down into the midst of the Boers!

    A Dash from Diamond City George Manville Fenn
  • Keep on walking, or if you are on a horse, keep on trotting and cantering alternately, till you get home.

  • And I've been thinking about you just cantering through wild, gay adventures.

    Way of the Lawless Max Brand
  • Suddenly the sound of a cantering horse approaching from the north fell upon my ears.

    Captured by the Navajos Charles A. Curtis
  • Bridget would stay in the house, she had no fancy for cantering about.

    A Modern Cinderella Amanda M. Douglas
  • Then cantering on, he would work his way up to the head of the column and see the first and the last company march in.

    General Gatacre Beatrix Gatacre
  • There was no question of cantering, or even of trotting, now.

    Sophy of Kravonia Anthony Hope
British Dictionary definitions for cantering


an easy three-beat gait of horses, etc, between a trot and a gallop in speed
at a canter, easily; without effort: he won at a canter
to move or cause to move at a canter
Word Origin
C18: short for Canterbury trot, the supposed pace at which pilgrims rode to Canterbury
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for cantering



1755, from canter (v.).



1706, from a contraction of Canterbury gallop (1630s), "easy pace at which pilgrims ride to Canterbury" (q.v.). Related: Cantered; cantering.


1755, from canter (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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