Definitions

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

  • n. A small finch (Serinus canaria) native to the Canary Islands that is greenish to yellow and has long been bred as a cage bird.
  • n. Slang A woman singer.
  • n. Slang An informer; a stool pigeon.
  • n. A sweet white wine from the Canary Islands, similar to Madeira.
  • n. A light to moderate or vivid yellow.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A small, usually yellow, finch (genus Serinus), a songbird native to the Canary Islands.
  • n. Any of various small birds of different countries, most of which are largely yellow in colour.
  • n. A light, slightly greenish, yellow colour.
  • n. A light, sweet, white wine from the Canary Islands.
  • n. A lively dance, possibly of Spanish origin (also called canaries).
  • n. Any test subject, especially an inadvertent or unwilling one. (From the mining practice of using canaries to detect dangerous gases.)
  • n. A female singer, soprano, a coloratura singer.
  • n. An informer or snitch; a squealer.
  • n. A (usually yellow) capsule of Nembutal™ barbiturate.
  • n. A yellow sticker of unroadworthiness.
  • adj. Of a light yellow colour.
  • v. to dance nimbly (as in the canary dance)

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to the Canary Islands.
  • adj. Of a pale yellowish color.
  • n. Wine made in the Canary Islands; sack.
  • n. A canary bird.
  • n. A pale yellow color, like that of a canary bird.
  • n. A quick and lively dance.
  • intransitive v. To perform the canary dance; to move nimbly; to caper.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Wine made in the Canary islands.
  • n. A lively French and English dance, of disputed origin, similar to the jig: named from the Canary islands. Often written canaries.
  • n. A melody intended for such a dance, written in sextuple (or sometimes quadruple) rhythm.
  • n. A canary-bird (which see).
  • n. A sovereign (gold coin): so called from its color.
  • n. A kept mistress.
  • n. A word put by Shakspere in its singular arid plural forms into the mouth of Mrs. Quickly, in the explanation of which commentators differ. It is probably an intentional blunder for quandary.
  • Of the color of the domestic canary-bird; bright-yellow.
  • To dance; frolic; perform the old dance called a canary.
  • n. In Australia, a name of Clitonyx ochrocephala, a relative of the lyrebird.

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

  • n. someone acting as an informer or decoy for the police
  • n. a female singer
  • n. any of several small Old World finches
  • adj. having the color of a canary; of a light to moderate yellow
  • n. a moderate yellow with a greenish tinge

Etymologies

French canari, from Spanish canario, of the Canary Islands, from (Islas) Canarias, Canary (Islands), from Late Latin Canāriae (Īnsulae), (islands) of dogs, from Latin canārius, pertaining to dogs, canine, from canis, dog; see kwon- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From the Latin Canariae insulae, "Canary Islands" (Spanish "Islas Canarias"); from the largest island Insula Canaria ("Dog Island" or "Canine Island"), named for its dogs, from canarius, "canine", from canis, dog. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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