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half-mast

[haf-mast, hahf-mahst] /ˈhæfˈmæst, ˈhɑfˈmɑst/
noun
1.
a position approximately halfway between the top of a mast, staff, etc., and its base.
verb (used with object)
2.
to place (a flag) at half-mast, as a mark of respect for the dead or as a signal of distress.
Origin
1620-1630
1620-30
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for half-mast
  • Though he was but a private citizen, flags flew at half-mast all over the city.
  • All state buildings have been directed to fly their flags at half-mast from sunrise to sunset.
  • The flags upon the several armories will be displayed at half-mast on the day of the funeral, from sunrise to sunset.
British Dictionary definitions for half-mast

half-mast

noun
1.
the lower than normal position to which a flag is lowered on a mast as a sign of mourning or distress
verb
2.
(transitive) to put (a flag) in this position
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 half-mast

1620s, from half + mast (n.1).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Difficulty index for half-mast

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for half

10
10
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with half-mast