Canvassv. t. [imp. & p. p. canvassed p. pr. & vb. n. Canvassing.] [OF. Canabasser to examine curiously, to search or sift out; properly, to sift through canvas. See Canvas, n.] 1. To sift; to strain; to examine thoroughly; to scrutinize; as to canvass the votes cast at an election; to canvass a district with reference to its probable vote. “I have made careful search on all hands, and canvassed the matter with all possible diligence.
Woodward.” 2. To examine by discussion; to debate. “An opinion that we are likely soon to canvass.
Sir W. Hamilton.” 3. To go through, with personal solicitation or public addresses; as to canvass a district for votes; to canvass a city for subscriptions.
Can´vass, v. i. To search thoroughly; to engage in solicitation by traversing a district; as to canvass for subscriptions or for votes; to canvass for a book, a publisher, or in behalf of a charity; — commonly followed by for.
Can´vass, n. 1. Close inspection; careful review for verification; as a canvass of votes. Bacon. 2. Examination in the way of discussion or debate. 3. Search; exploration; solicitation; systematic effort to obtain votes, subscribers, etc. “No previous canvass was made for me.