Definitions

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

  • n. An unfounded or false, deliberately misleading story.
  • n. A short winglike control surface projecting from the fuselage of an aircraft, such as a space shuttle, mounted forward of the main wing and serving as a horizontal stabilizer.
  • n. An aircraft whose horizontal stabilizing surfaces are forward of the main wing.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A false or misleading report or story, especially if deliberately so.
  • n. A type of aircraft in which the primary horizontal control and stabilization surfaces are in front of the main wing.
  • n. Any small winglike structure on a vehicle, usually used for stabilization.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An extravagant or absurd report or story; a fabricated sensational report or statement; esp. one set afloat in the newspapers to hoax the public.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. An absurd story or statement intended as an imposition; a fabricated story to which currency is given, as by a newspaper: a hoax.
  • n. Hence A broadside cried in the streets: so called from the generally sensational nature of its contents.
  • To fly or float about, or circulate as a canard or false report: as, certain stories canarding about the hotels.
  • To imitate or produce the peculiar harsh cry of the duck, as an unskilled player on a wind-instrument.

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

  • n. a deliberately misleading fabrication

Etymologies

French, duck, canard, probably from the phrase vendre un canard à moitié, to sell half a duck, to swindle, from Old French quanart, duck, from caner, to cackle, of imitative origin.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From French canard ("duck"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

Comments

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  • It comes from the French for "duck," so the color definition makes perfect sense. :-) Interesting OED etymology for the other meaning: "Littré says Canard for a silly story comes from the old expression'vendre un canard à moitié' (to half-sell a duck), in which à moitié was subsequently suppressed. It is clear that to half-sell a duck is not to sell it at all; hence the sense 'to take in, make a fool of.'"

    October 13, 2008

  • Beautifully put mollusque. This bird deserves special recognition in Estonia

    October 10, 2008

  • A bright, deep blue like that found on a mallard's wing.

    May 11, 2008

  • "For centuries, schoolboys first encountered the wisdom of the ancients in this predigested form. When Erasmus told the story of Pandora, he said that she opened not a jar, as in the original version of the story, by the Greek poet Hesiod, but a box. In every European language except Italian, Pandora’s box became proverbial—a canard made ubiquitous by the power of a new information technology." - Future Reading, by Andrew Grafton, The New Yorker, Nov 1 2007 http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2007/11/05/071105fa_fact_grafton?currentPage=2

    November 1, 2007

  • "A deliberately misleading fabrication"

    August 13, 2007