[ kan-ee ]
/ ˈkæn i /

adjective, can·ni·er, can·ni·est.

adverb Also can·ni·ly.

in a canny manner.
Scot. carefully; cautiously.


Discover The Influence Of Portuguese On English Via This Quiz!
We’ve gathered some interesting words donated to English from Portuguese … as well as some that just don’t translate at all. Do you know what they mean?
Question 1 of 11
Which of the following bird names traces its immediate origin to Portuguese?

Origin of canny

First recorded in 1630–40; can1 + -y1


can·ni·ness, nouno·ver·can·ny, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for cannier

British Dictionary definitions for cannier

/ (ˈkænɪ) /

adjective -nier or -niest

shrewd, esp in business; astute or wary; knowing
Scot and Northeast English dialect good or nice: used as a general term of approval
Scot lucky or fortunate


Scot and Northeast English dialect quite; rathera canny long while

Derived forms of canny

cannily, adverbcanniness, noun

Word Origin for canny

C16: from can 1 (in the sense: to know how) + -y 1
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