AskDefine | Define canard

Dictionary Definition

canard n : a deliberately misleading fabrication

User Contributed Dictionary



From canard. It has been suggested that there was a French phrase "to half-sell a duck" which meant to fool or cheat someone.



  1. A false or misleading report or story, especially if deliberately so.
  2. A type of aircraft in which the primary horizontal control and stabilization surfaces are in front of the main wing.


  • 2005: It’s a cinch, now that Spurling has cleared away a century’s worth of misapprehensions and canards. — The New Yorker, 29 August 2005, page 78.



From cane + -ard, which evolved from the Old French ane (from the Latin anas). It has been suggested that the addition of the c enabled the word to be distinguished from âne.


  • lang=fr|/ka.naʁ/
  • lang=fr|/ka.naR/


  1. duck (of either sex)
  2. drake (male duck)
  3. journal
    Le canard enchaîné

Related terms

Extensive Definition

Canard is French for duck, and is often used in English to refer to a deliberately false story, originating from an abbreviated form of an old French idiom, "vendre un canard à moitié," meaning "to half-sell a duck." In French it can also mean a journal. It may refer to:
  • Canard (aeronautics), flight control surfaces mounted at the front of an aircraft or an aircraft bearing such surfaces
  • Le Canard enchaîné, a satirical French newspaper. The newspaper itself gave birth to another meaning for canard: newspaper.
canard in French: Canard (homonymie)
canard in Dutch: Canard
canard in Japanese: カナード

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Cornish hen, artifice, bouncer, broiler, bruit, buzz, caille, caneton, capon, chapon, chicken, common talk, concoction, cry, dindon, dodge, duck, duckling, extravaganza, fable, fabrication, faisan, falsehood, falsity, fib, fiction, figment, flying rumor, forgery, fowl, fryer, goose, grapevine, grouse, guinea hen, hearsay, hoax, humbug, idea afloat, invention, latrine rumor, lie, misrepresentation, myth, news stirring, oie, on-dit, partridge, pheasant, pigeon, pigeonneau, poulet, prevarication, quail, report, roaster, romance, roorback, rumble, rumor, scuttlebutt, sell, spoof, squab, stewing chicken, tale, talk, town talk, trick, turkey, unconfirmed report, untruth, volaille, whisper, wild duck
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