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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ As the cantor was reciting the Eighteen Benedictions, one fellow was trying to sell a lottery ticket.
▪ Before the Beethoven a Viennese cantor sang the Kaddish prayer of mourning.
▪ In this situation the Commission believes that consideration should he given to the use of a cantor, or animateur.
▪ The cantor follows suit with even more feeling.
▪ The great cantors developed their own special variations on the liturgy, largely on the basis of folk tradition.
▪ These call for an increased use of soloists as cantors and for some direction of the congregation, often by means of an animateur.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Cantor \Can"tor\, n. [L., a singer, fr. caner to sing.] A singer; esp. the leader of a church choir; a precentor.

The cantor of the church intones the Te Deum.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1530s, "church song-leader," from Latin cantor "singer, poet, actor," agent noun from past participle stem of canere "to sing" (see chant (v.)). Applied in English to the Hebrew chazan from 1893.


n. singer, especially someone who takes a special role of singing or song leading at a ceremony

  1. n. the musical director of a choir [syn: choirmaster, precentor]

  2. the official of a synagogue who conducts the liturgical part of the service and sings or chants the prayers intended to be performed as solos [syn: hazan]

Cantor (surname)

Cantor is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

  • Andrés Cantor (born 1962), Spanish-language soccer announcer
  • Anthony Cantor (born 1946), British diplomat
  • Arthur Cantor (1920–2001), American theatrical producer
  • Aviva Cantor (born 1940), American journalist, lecturer and author
  • B. Gerald Cantor (1916–1996), American businessman
    • Cantor Fitzgerald, financial services firm founded by him
  • Brian Cantor (born 1948), Vice-Chancellor of the University of York, UK
  • Charles Cantor (born 1942), American molecular geneticist
  • David Cantor (born 1954), American actor and singer
  • Eddie Cantor (1892–1964), American comedian, singer, actor, songwriter
  • Eric Cantor (born 1963), American politician
  • Geoffrey Cantor (born 1943), professor of history and philosophy of science at the University of Leeds
  • Georg Cantor (1845–1918), German mathematician, founder of set theory
  • Jacob A. Cantor (1854–1921), New York politician
  • James Cantor (born 1966), American-Canadian clinical psychologist specializing in sexology
  • Jay Cantor (born 1948), American novelist and essayist
  • Liz Cantor (born 1982), Australian television presenter
  • Max Cantor (1959–1991), American journalist and actor
  • Mircea Cantor (born 1977), Romanian visual artist
  • Moritz Cantor (1829–1920), German historian of mathematics
  • Nancy Cantor (born 1952), Chancellor and President of Syracuse University
  • Noah Cantor (born 1971), Canadian footballer
  • Norman Cantor (1929–2004), Canadian medievalist
  • Peter Cantor (died 1197), French Roman Catholic theologian
  • Paul Cantor (born 1945) is an American literary critic
  • Steven Cantor, American film/television director
  • Theodore Edward Cantor (1809–1860), Danish biologist
  • Tim Cantor (born 1969), American surrealism artist and writer
  • Wulfstan the Cantor (c.960 – early 11th century), Anglo-Saxon monk
Cantor (crater)

Cantor is a lunar impact crater that is located on the northern hemisphere on the far side of the Moon. The outer rim of the crater has a distinctly hexagonal shape, and is slightly longer in the north–south direction. The interior walls are multiply terraced, although less so along the western rim. There is a low central peak at the midpoint of the floor.

The terrain surrounding Cantor is heavily impacted with many small craters. The old and heavily eroded crater H. G. Wells is located to the northwest. To the southeast is Kidinnu.

Cantor (disambiguation)

A cantor is one who leads a religious group, or perhaps others, in singing.

It may also refer to:

Cantor (software)

Cantor is a free software mathematics application for scientific statistics and analysis. It is part of the KDE Software Compilation 4, and was introduced with the 4.4 release as part of the KDE Education Project's kdeedu package.

Cantor (music software)

Cantor was a vocal singing synthesizer software released four months after the original release of Vocaloid by the company VirSyn, and was based on the same idea of synethesizing the human voice. VirSyn released English and German versions of this software. Cantor 2 boasted a variety of voices from near-realistic sounding ones to highly expressive vocals and robotic voices.

Cantor (Christianity)

In Christianity, the cantor, sometimes called the precentor or the protopsaltes (; from ) is the chief singer, and usually instructor, employed at a church, a cathedral or monastery with responsibilities for the ecclesiastical choir and the preparation of liturgy.

The cantor's duties and qualifications have varied considerably according to time, place, and rite, and often its prestige was so high that it came close to the highest offices in the ecclesiastical hierarchy, for instance monastic cantors promoted to the office of an abbot or abbess. Sometimes the office was connected with administrative, militaric, and governmental duties (the " Maestro di Capella" at San Marco di Venezia), even with those of a schoolteacher, as in case of the Thomaskantor in charge of the Thomasschule zu Leipzig, educating a boys' choir that served four churches.

Generally a cantor must be competent to choose and to conduct the vocals for the choir, to start any chant on demand, and to be able to identify and correct the missteps of singers placed under him. He may be held accountable for the immediate rendering of the music, showing the course of the melody by movements of the hand(s) (cheironomia), similar to a conductor.


A cantor is a person who leads people in singing, or sometimes in prayer. In formal Christian worship, a cantor is a person who sings solo verses or passages to which the choir or congregation responds. In Judaism, a cantor is one who sings and leads people in prayer in a Jewish religious service, and may be called hazzan. "Cantor" is used as a translation of equivalent terms in other languages, such as for the leader of singing on a traditional Kerala snake boat, a Chundan Vallam.

A similar term is precentor, defined as a leader of the singing of a choir or congregation.

More specific types of cantor include:

  • Cantor (Christianity), an ecclesiastical officer leading liturgical music in several branches of the Christian church
    • Domestikos, leader of the right choir (Orthodox Church)
    • Lampadarios, leader of the left choir (Orthodox Church)
    • Precentor
    • Succentor
  • Hazzan, cantor in a Jewish synagogue
    • Cantors Assembly
    • Cantor in Reform Judaism
    • Syrian Cantors


Usage examples of "cantor".

So easy is it that the cantors have given these known pathways a special name: They call them the stellar fallaways to distinguish them from that part of the manifold that is unmapped, and quite often, unmappable.

Like a cantor, he drew out the last syllable in the traditional way, as Rabbi Akiba had done as he died in the amphitheater at Caesarea on the orders of Tinius Rufus.

From behind, rising out of the church, Alain heard the cantors begin the chant for the office of Nones.

Her resolution very nearly failed her when Cantor sidled to one side as Ian tossed her into the saddle.

Brandy had no time for a simple click click, for no sooner did Hercules break into a slow measured trot than Cantor, oblivious to the ineffective tug on his reins, snorted and pranced forward.

As for this race, Brandy, Cantor has all the speed of Hercules, so you get no beginning start.

For a brief moment, she forgot her fear, so smoothly and speedily did Cantor race across the meadow.

She tugged frantically and closed her eyes as Cantor headed full tilt toward Ian.

She heard a shout of laughter, felt Cantor rear back on his hind legs, and dropped the reins, grasping the pommel with all her strength.

He drew alongside just as Cantor broke through the trees back to the main road.

He leaned over to grab the reins from her hands when she jerked back on the bridle and tried to wheel Cantor away.

There was another loud clap of thunder, and Cantor lengthened his stride and crashed all the faster through the dense undergrowth.

Ian had nearly reached her when he saw Cantor fall to one knee and Brandy fly over his head.

Women screamed and people scrambled for cover while Cantor shoved the smoking pistol in his pocket and disappeared into the forming crowd.

Later Cantor walked into the Bethune Street Police Station and turned himself in for murder.