from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A slender, strong but often flexible stem, as of certain bamboos, reeds, or rattans.
  • n. A plant having such a stem.
  • n. Such stems or strips of such stems used for wickerwork or baskets.
  • n. A bamboo (Arundinaria gigantea) native to the southeast United States, having long stiff stems and often forming canebrakes.
  • n. The stem of a raspberry, blackberry, certain roses, or similar plants.
  • n. Sugar cane.
  • n. A stick used as an aid in walking or carried as an accessory.
  • n. A rod used for flogging.
  • transitive v. To make, supply, or repair with flexible woody material.
  • transitive v. To hit or beat with a rod.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The slender, flexible main stem of a plant such as bamboo, including many species in the Grass family Gramineae.
  • n. The plant itself, including many species in the Grass family Gramineae; a reed.
  • n. sugar cane. (US, Southern) Sometimes applied to maize or rarely to sorghum when such plants are processed to make molasses (treacle) or sugar.
  • n. A short rod or stick, traditionally of wood or bamboo, used for corporal punishment.
  • n. A length of colored and/or patterned glass rod, used in the specific glassblowing technique called caneworking.
  • n. Corporal punishment by beating with a cane; the cane.
  • n. A strong short staff used for support or decoration during walking; a walking stick.
  • n. A long rod often collapsible and commonly white (for visibility to other persons), used by blind persons for guidance in determining their course and for probing for obstacles in their path.
  • v. To strike or beat with a cane or similar implement.
  • v. To destroy.
  • v. To do something well, in a competent fashion.
  • v. It hurts.
  • v. To make or furnish with cane or rattan.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n.
  • n. A name given to several peculiar palms, species of Calamus and Dæmanorops, having very long, smooth flexible stems, commonly called rattans.
  • n. Any plant with long, hard, elastic stems, as reeds and bamboos of many kinds; also, the sugar cane.
  • n. Stems of other plants are sometimes called canes.
  • n. A walking stick; a staff; -- so called because originally made of one of the species of cane.
  • n. A lance or dart made of cane.
  • n. A local European measure of length. See Canna.
  • transitive v. To beat with a cane.
  • transitive v. To make or furnish with cane or rattan.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To beat or flog with a cane or walking-stick.
  • To furnish or complete with cane; fill the center of the back or the seat with interwoven strips of cane: as, to cane chairs.
  • n. A rather long and slender jointed woody stem, more or less rigid, hollow or pithy, as that of some palms, grasses, and other plants, such as the ratan, bamboo, and sugar-cane; also, the stem of raspberries or blackberries.
  • n. Sugar-cane: as, a plantation of cane; cane-sugar.
  • n. The plant Arundinaria macrosperma of the southern United States, forming cane-brakes. See Arundinaria.
  • n. The stem of a plant, as the bamboo, used as a walking-stick; hence, any walking-stick.
  • n. A lance or dart made of cane.
  • n. A chair having the seat, or the seat and back, made of thin strips of cane, retaining their natural smooth surface, interlaced or woven together.
  • n. In Scotland, rent paid in kind, as in poultry, eggs, etc.; hence, any tax, tribute, or duty exacted.
  • n. An obsolete form of can.
  • n. An obsolete form of khan.
  • n. A slender stick or rod of some substance such as sealing-wax, sulphur, glass, or tobacco.
  • n. A slender panic-grass, Panicum dichotomum, a valuable native forage for sheep in the southern United States.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. beat with a cane
  • n. a stiff switch used to hit students as punishment
  • n. a stick that people can lean on to help them walk
  • n. a strong slender often flexible stem as of bamboos, reeds, rattans, or sugar cane


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English, from Old French, from Latin canna, small reed, from Greek kanna, of Semitic origin; see qnw in Semitic roots.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French cane ("sugar cane"), from Latin canna ("reed"), from Ancient Greek κάννα (kánna), from Aramaic qanhā, qanyā, from Akkadian qanu 'tube, reed', from Sumerian gin 'reed'.


  • Morefield Storey, one of Sumner’s biographers, says Brooks’s cane was “a heavy gutta-percha cane” and that the blows were continued “until the cane broke.

    On the Crime Against Kansas

  • "_Not with the cane, not with the cane_, Mackworth," cried several voices in agitation, but not in time to prevent the cane descending with heavy hand across the child's back.

    St. Winifred's, or The World of School

  • The green seas of sugar cane give way to scared charred fields when the cane is cut, looking like dead alien landscapes.


  • On a per-acre basis, sugar cane is about 6 times more efficient than corn at converting sunlight to ethanol.

    Ethanol Enthusiasts, Arnold Kling | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty

  • Another nice thing about a cane is that it's an indicator to others that Something Is Afoot, and they don't (usually) grumble about your needing to sit while they are standing and often give you a little more space to maneuver.

    mrissa: Milestone

  • And it's good news to hear soda might contain cane sugar again ... my favorite 'coke in a bottle' I love because it's not as sweet (ie, not made w/corn syrup).

    Dr Pepper and peanuts | Homesick Texan

  • When sugar cane is being processed into sugar, the juice from crushed or pressed sugar cane is boiled to prompt the crystallization process.

    Which molasses should I use? | Baking Bites

  • It's a shipping center for coconuts, bananas, limes, avocados, mangoes and sugar cane from the local plantations.

    Walking the walk, talking the talk - Atlantis in Mexico part 2

  • The ivory skull handle on this rosewood walking cane is quite amazing.

    Boing Boing

  • There are many different types of sugar: glucose, fructose and lactose are among them, but the table sugar (or sucrose) that most of us eat, extracted from beet and cane, is made up of glucose and fructose.

    Archive 2006-10-01


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