Artful cunning shrewd wary
- showing self-interest and shrewdness when controling other individuals
- Alt. of Cannei
1630s, Scottish and north English formation from can (v.1) in its feeling of "know how to," + -y (2). "Knowing," for this reason, "cautious." A doublet of cunning that flowed into distinct senses. Often utilized superciliously of Scots by their southern neighbors (and their American cousins). The Canny Scot is really so famous as scarcely to require description. He carries care, cunning, and selfishness to excess. Deceitful when an objective is usually to be accomplished, he is maybe not constantly deceitful. A very important factor he never manages to lose sight of--his own interest. But of their own interest he could be maybe not the absolute most enlightened judge. ["The normal History of Scotsmen," in "The Argosy," December 1865] Related: Cannily; canniness.
The Borghesi, with canny haste under the short-lived Gregory XV.