Share this entry

Share this page

canteen

Syllabification: can·teen
Pronunciation: /kanˈtēn
 
/

Definition of canteen in English:

noun

1A restaurant provided by an organization such as a military camp, college, factory, or company for its soldiers, students, staff, etc.
Example sentences
  • Anybody who has seen a fight sequence from a Hindi film which takes place in a college canteen or a restaurant will know the answer.
  • It is also about the activities of college students in the canteen, sports fields and between classes.
  • Scotland's school canteens must become bistro-style restaurants, complete with salad bars and a menu of baguettes and grilled fish, food experts are to tell ministers.
Synonyms
2A small water bottle, as used by soldiers or campers.
Example sentences
  • You don't just tell your soldiers to fill their canteens with water; you check them before a patrol to make sure they did.
  • I also threw in two canteens of water and a flashlight (even though we weren't staying out after dark), the map from my office as well as my lensatic compass.
  • The utility belt attached below the vest includes two canteens of water and a nine-millimeter pistol.
Synonyms
container, flask, bottle

Origin

mid 18th century (originally denoting a type of shop in a barracks or garrison town): from French cantine, from Italian cantina 'cellar'.

More
  • This was originally a type of shop in a barracks or garrison town, selling provisions and liquor to soldiers. The form comes from French cantine, from Italian cantina ‘cellar’. The French had already transferred this to the water bottle soldiers carry with them, and this sense came into the language at the same time as the original.

Definition of canteen in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day Noel
Pronunciation: nōˈel
noun
Christmas…