a large metal barrel, can, or similar receptacle for ashes, garbage, or refuse.
Slang. a depth charge.
Movies. an arc light of 1000 watts, enclosed in a reflector.

Origin of ashcan

First recorded in 1895–1900; ash1 + can2 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for ashcan

dustbin, wastebasket, skip

Examples from the Web for ashcan

Historical Examples of ashcan

  • It is to be published on sugar-cured oilskin, the edition to be limited to two numbered copies—one for me and one for the ashcan.


    Lawton Mackall

  • Paul thought it time to beat a silent retreat in the direction of the ashcan he had selected as his cover.