American English

Definition of can noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    see also can1
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  1. 1[countable] a metal container in which food or drinks are sold a can of beans a beer/paint can
  2. 2[countable] the amount contained in a can We drank a can of soda each.
  3. 3[countable] a metal or plastic container for holding or carrying liquids an oil can a watering can
  4. 4[countable] a metal container in which liquids are kept under pressure and let out in a fine spray when you press a button on the lid a can of hairspray
  5. 5the can [singular] (slang) prison
  6. 6the can [singular] (slang) the toilet
  7. Idioms
    be in the can (informal)
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    (especially of filmed or recorded material) to be completed and ready for use
    a can of worms (informal)
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    if you open up a can of worms, you start doing something that will cause a lot of problems and be very difficult
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: can