Meaning of canting arms in English:

canting arms

plural noun

  • Arms containing an allusion to the name of the bearer.

    ‘The heron is drawn with a long tuft on its head; it is found in the canting arms of Heron, c.1255.’
    • ‘Both of these patents of arms may be termed canting arms which means that they contain a pun on the surname.’
    • ‘In England, smooth-feathered corbies are found in depictions of the canting arms of Corbet throughout our period.’
    • ‘The black roundle in the center of the shield with the three stones or rocks affords canting arms for Rockville Centre.’
    • ‘The arms of the Archdiocese of Hartford are called canting arms or armes parlantes, which speak or proclaim the name of the bearer.’


Early 17th century canting from cant, in the obsolete sense ‘speak, say (in a particular way)’.