[ en-sahyn; Military en-suhn ]
See synonyms for ensign on Thesaurus.com
  1. a flag or banner, as a military or naval standard used to indicate nationality.

  2. a badge of office or authority, as heraldic arms.

  1. a sign, token, or emblem: the dove, an ensign of peace.

  2. U.S. Navy and Coast Guard. the lowest commissioned officer, ranking next below a lieutenant, junior grade, and equal to a second lieutenant in the Army.

Origin of ensign

1325–75; Middle English ensigne<Old French enseigne<Latin insignia;see insignia

Other words for ensign

Other words from ensign

  • en·sign·ship, en·sign·cy, noun

Words Nearby ensign

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How to use ensign in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for ensign


/ (ˈɛnsaɪn) /

  1. (also ˈɛnsən) a flag flown by a ship, branch of the armed forces, etc, to indicate nationality, allegiance, etc: See also Red Ensign, White Ensign

  2. any flag, standard, or banner

  1. a standard-bearer

  2. a symbol, token, or emblem; sign

  3. (in the US Navy) a commissioned officer of the lowest rank

  4. (in the British infantry) a colours bearer

  5. (formerly in the British infantry) a commissioned officer of the lowest rank

Origin of ensign

C14: from Old French enseigne, from Latin insignia

Derived forms of ensign

  • ensignship or ensigncy, noun

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