• IPA: /ˈpɛnən/

pennon (plural pennons)

  1. A thin, often triangular flag or streamer, especially as hung from the end of a lance or spear.
    • 1590, Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queen, London: William Ponsonbie, Book 2, Canto 3, p. 227,
      Her yellow lockes crisped, like golden wyre,
      About her shoulders weren loosely shed,
      And when the winde emongst them did inspyre,
      They waued like a penon wyde dispred
      And low behinde her backe were scattered:
    • circa 1598 William Shakespeare, Henry V (play), Act III, Scene 5,
      Bar Harry England, that sweeps through our land
      With pennons painted in the blood of Harfleur:
    • 1820, Walter Scott, Ivanhoe, Edinburgh: Archibald Constable, 1821, Volume 1, Chapter 7, p. 103,
      […] in spite of a sort of screen intended to protect them from the wind, the flame of the torches streamed sideways into the air, like the unfurled pennon of a chieftain.
    • 1846, Herman Melville, Typee, New York: Wiley and Putnam, Part 1, Chapter 23, p. 214,
      Precisely in the middle of the quadrangle were placed perpendicularly in the ground, a hundred or more slender, fresh-cut poles, stripped of their bark, and decorated at the end with a floating pennon of white tappa;
    • 1863, Christina Rossetti, “A Royal Princess” in Isa Craig (ed.), An Offering to Lancashire, London: Emily Faithfull, p. 3,[]
      Vassal counts and princes follow where his pennon goes,
    • 1909, Charles Henry Ashdown, British and Foreign Arms and Armour, London: T.C. & E.C. Jack, Chapter 5, pages 65-66,
      Nearly all the Norman spears were embellished with pennons of from two to five points.
  2. (nautical) A long pointed streamer or flag on a vessel.
    Synonyms: pennant
    • 1631, Michael Drayton, The Battaile of Agincourt, London: William Lee, p. 21,
      [...] a ship most neatly that was lim’d,
      In all her sailes with Flags and Pennons trim’d.
    • 1780, Hannah Cowley, The Maid of Arragon, London: L. Davis et al.,
      Fair Commerce wav’d her pennons in our ports;
    • 1886, Louisa May Alcott, Jo's Boys, Boston: Roberts Brothers, Chapter 11, p. 208,
      […] as his eye swept the horizon, clear against the rosy sky shone the white sails of a ship, so near that they could see the pennon at her mast-head and black figures moving on the deck.
  3. (literary, obsolete) A wing appendage of an animal's body enabling it to fly; any of the outermost primary feathers on a wing.
    Synonyms: pinion
    • 1630, Henry Lord, A Display of Two Forraigne Sects in the East Indies, London: Francis Constable, “The Religion of the Persees,” Chapter 4, p. 16,
      […] sodainly there descended before him, as his face was bent towards the earth, an Angell, whose wings had glorious Pennons, and whose face glistered as the beames of the Sunne,
    • 1667, John Milton, Paradise Lost, Book 2, lines 933-934,
      Fluttring his pennons vain plumb down he [Satan] drops
      Ten thousand fadom deep,
    • 1751, Moses Mendes, “Summer” in The Seasons, p. 11,
      Favonius gentle skims along the Grove,
      And sheds sweet Odors from his Pennons light.
  • German: Wimpel
  • Russian: флажо́к

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