Definition of pennant in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpenənt/


1North American A flag denoting a sports championship or other achievement.
Example sentences
  • Now, I never am one to hand trophies or pennants or championships to teams before they go out and show they can win it, but how many of you had the same thought?
  • He pulls out some pennants of our favourite sports teams and we taped them to some of the remaining wall space.
  • Inside, the place is awash in team pennants, neon beer logos and an Oscar-looking pool trophy.
2A tapering flag on a ship, especially one flown at the masthead of a vessel in commission. Also called pennon.
Example sentences
  • A typical Fourth of July in New York City began with the roar of cannons and the unfurling of flags, pennants, and streamers from the masts of hundreds of ships around the harbor.
  • The last voyage of a hectic year was completed with her decommissioning pennant flying as she sailed form Fremantle to Fleet Base West.
  • During the service the traditional pennant, which declares to the enemy that prayers are being said and that the ‘ship should not be attacked’, flew from the chapel balcony.
2.1A long triangular or swallow-tailed flag, especially as a military ensign.
Example sentences
  • A stage has been built in a hangar, where several hundred troops are waiting beneath five regimental pennants.
  • Old flags, pennants, war cries and songs are to be seen and heard on the streets once more.
  • If you have assigned vehicles, devise a marking system with pennants or small flags that helps you visualize how your platoon is arrayed or where it is located.
3 Nautical another term for pendant.
Example sentences
  • Moored ships moved restlessly, shifting and creaking, the forest of masts with their canopies of ropes and sails and pennants swaying ever so slightly in the breeze.


Early 17th century: blend of pendant and pennon.

  • This word for a flag is a blend of pendant and late Middle English pennon. The latter is a less common word for a ‘flag’, ultimately from Latin penna ‘feather’ ( see pen).

Words that rhyme with pennant

lieutenant, subtenant, tenant

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: pen·nant

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