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[pen-uh nt] /ˈpɛn ənt/
a long, tapering flag or burgee of distinctive form and special significance, borne on naval or other vessels and used in signaling or for identification.
any relatively long, tapering flag.
a flag serving as an emblem of victory or championship, especially in baseball.
Music. hook1 (def 12a).
Nautical. pendant (def 6).
Origin of pennant
1605-15; blend of pennon and pendant
Can be confused
pendant, pendent, pennant, pundit. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for pennant
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • You know were fighting for the pennant, and were depending on this king pitcher of ours more than on any one else to win out.

    Baseball Joe, Home Run King Lester Chadwick
  • She's flying the White Ensign and an admiral's pennant, and, yes, a flag of truce.

    The World Peril of 1910 George Griffith
  • The disappearance of the Black Rat was remarked by pennant as far back as 1778.

  • When the pennant is half mast, it denotes the death of the captain.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • "Hold the sloop as she is, and I will board you," said Mr. pennant, as he saw the skipper filling away again.

    Stand By The Union Oliver Optic
  • Commodore Dallas's pennant was flying in the Constellation when I joined her.

    Ned Myers James Fenimore Cooper
  • The cat had looked up, stretched, and lazily gotten upon his feet and followed him, tail waving like a pennant.

    The Butterfly House Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
British Dictionary definitions for pennant


a type of pennon, esp one flown from vessels as identification or for signalling
(mainly US & Canadian, Austral)
  1. a flag serving as an emblem of championship in certain sports
  2. (as modifier): pennant cricket
(nautical) another word for pendant (sense 5)
same as flag1 (sense 10)
Word Origin
C17: probably a blend of pendant and pennon
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 pennant

1610s, "rope for hoisting," probably a blend of pendant in the nautical sense of "suspended rope" and pennon. Use for "flag on a warship" first recorded 1690s; "flag symbolizing a sports championship" (especially baseball) is from 1880; as a synonym for "championship" it was first used 1915.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for pennant


Related Terms

irish pennant

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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