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[uh-lawft, uh-loft] /əˈlɔft, əˈlɒft/
high up; far above the ground.
  1. on the masts; in the rigging; overhead.
  2. (on a square-rigged sailing ship) in the upper rigging, specifically, on or above the lower yards (opposed to alow).
in or into the air.
on or at the top of:
flags flying aloft the castle.
Origin of aloft
1150-1200; Middle English o loft; < Old Norse ā lopt in the air; see a-1, loft Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for aloft
  • At night they sleep aloft, high in the rain forest canopy.
  • There she stands, slowly lifting her arm aloft and holding it aloft with a carefully studied gesture.
  • Keeping drones aloft is not the only putative application of power beaming, as this technology is known.
  • By dragging the bodies of large animals aloft it hopes to keep them safe from scavengers such as hyenas.
  • Both are essentially spinning wings that stay aloft thanks to aerodynamic lift and gyroscopic stability.
  • The craft, which is powered by its own electricity and can stay aloft for months, feeds electricity to the ground through a cable.
  • Such blimps can keep surveillance and ordnance-guiding equipment aloft for a few hundred dollars an hour.
  • Modern birds use their legs to launch and their wings to stay aloft.
  • Montague could simply hold the proper end of the car aloft while someone else attached the spare.
  • It can stay aloft in the stratosphere for up to four days, powered by hydrogen.
British Dictionary definitions for aloft


adverb, adjective (postpositive)
in or into a high or higher place; up above
(nautical) in or into the rigging of a vessel
Word Origin
C12: from Old Norse ā lopt in the air; see lift1, loft
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for aloft

c.1200, from a Scandinavian source; cf. Old Norse a lopti "up above," literally "up in the air," from a "in, on" + lopt "sky, air, atmosphere; loft, upper room" (cf. Gothic luftus, Old High German luft, Old English lyft "air;" see loft).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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