canon can"on (k[a^]n"[u^]n), n. [OE. canon, canoun, AS. canon rule (cf. F. canon, LL. canon, and, for sense 7, F. chanoine, LL. canonicus), fr. L. canon a measuring line, rule, model, fr. Gr. kanw`n rule, rod, fr. ka`nh, ka`nnh, reed. See {Cane}, and cf. {Canonical}.] 1. A law or rule. [1913 Webster]

Or that the Everlasting had not fixed His canon 'gainst self-slaughter. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

2. (Eccl.) A law, or rule of doctrine or discipline, enacted by a council and confirmed by the pope or the sovereign; a decision, regulation, code, or constitution made by ecclesiastical authority. [1913 Webster]

Various canons which were made in councils held in the second centry. --Hook. [1913 Webster]

3. The collection of books received as genuine Holy Scriptures, called the {sacred canon}, or general rule of moral and religious duty, given by inspiration; the Bible; also, any one of the canonical Scriptures. See {Canonical books}, under {Canonical}, a. [1913 Webster]

4. In monasteries, a book containing the rules of a religious order. [1913 Webster]

5. A catalogue of saints acknowledged and canonized in the Roman Catholic Church. [1913 Webster]

6. A member of a cathedral chapter; a person who possesses a prebend in a cathedral or collegiate church. [1913 Webster]

7. (Mus.) A musical composition in which the voices begin one after another, at regular intervals, successively taking up the same subject. It either winds up with a coda (tailpiece), or, as each voice finishes, commences anew, thus forming a perpetual fugue or round. It is the strictest form of imitation. See {Imitation}. [1913 Webster]

8. (Print.) The largest size of type having a specific name; -- so called from having been used for printing the canons of the church. [1913 Webster]

9. The part of a bell by which it is suspended; -- called also {ear} and {shank}.

Note: [See Illust. of {Bell}.] --Knight. [1913 Webster]

10. (Billiards) See {Carom}. [1913 Webster]

{Apostolical canons}. See under {Apostolical}.

{Augustinian canons}, {Black canons}. See under {Augustinian}.

{Canon capitular}, {Canon residentiary}, a resident member of a cathedral chapter (during a part or the whole of the year).

{Canon law}. See under {Law}.

{Canon of the Mass} (R. C. Ch.), that part of the mass, following the Sanctus, which never changes.

{Honorary canon}, a canon[6] who neither lived in a monastery, nor kept the canonical hours.

{Minor canon} (Ch. of Eng.), one who has been admitted to a chapter, but has not yet received a prebend.

{Regular canon} (R. C. Ch.), one who lived in a conventual community and followed the rule of St. Austin; a Black canon.

{Secular canon} (R. C. Ch.), one who did not live in a monastery, but kept the hours. [1913 Webster] ||

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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