[ ahm-puh-nahzh, em-; French ahn-pe-nazh ]
/ ˌɑm pəˈnɑʒ, ˌɛm-; French ɑ̃ pɛˈnaʒ /

noun, plural em·pen·nag·es [ahm-puh-nah-zhiz, em-; French ahn-pe-nazh] /ˌɑm pəˈnɑ ʒɪz, ˌɛm-; French ɑ̃ pɛˈnaʒ/.

the rear part of an airplane or airship, usually comprising the stabilizer, elevator, vertical fin, and rudder.

Nearby words

  1. empathic,
  2. empathise,
  3. empathize,
  4. empathy,
  5. empedocles,
  6. emperipolesis,
  7. emperor,
  8. emperor butterfly,
  9. emperor jones, the,
  10. emperor moth

Origin of empennage

1905–10; < French: literally, feathering, equivalent to empenn(er) to feather an arrow (em- em-1 + -penner, derivative of penne feather; see pen1) + -age -age

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for empennage

British Dictionary definitions for empennage


/ (ɛmˈpɛnɪdʒ, French ɑ̃pɛnaʒ) /


the rear part of an aircraft, comprising the fin, rudder, and tailplane

Word Origin for empennage

C20: from French: feathering, from empenner to feather an arrow, from penne feather, from Latin pinna

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