• synonyms


[mast-hed, mahst-]
See more synonyms for masthead on Thesaurus.com
  1. Also called flag. a statement printed in all issues of a newspaper, magazine, or the like, usually on the editorial page, giving the publication's name, the names of the owner and staff, etc.
  2. Also called nameplate. a line of type on the front page of a newspaper or the cover of a periodical giving the name of the publication.
  3. Nautical.
    1. the head of a mast.
    2. the uppermost point of a mast.
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verb (used with object) Nautical.
  1. to hoist a yard to the fullest extent.
  2. to hoist to the truck of a mast, as a flag.
  3. to send to the upper end of a mast as a punishment.
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  1. Nautical. run up to the head of a mast: masthead rig.
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Origin of masthead

First recorded in 1740–50; mast1 + head
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for masthead

banner, banneret, colors, ensign, oriflamme, pennant, pennon, standard, streamer, bannerol, burgee, guidon, masthead

Examples from the Web for masthead

Contemporary Examples of masthead

Historical Examples of masthead

  • They saw the banner of Castile come fluttering down from the masthead.

    Captain Blood

    Rafael Sabatini

  • Tom was at the masthead, endeavouring to pick up some landmark.

    The Last Voyage

    Lady (Annie Allnutt) Brassey

  • Signals of distress were seen at her masthead, but no boat could venture out.

  • That I might know his boat, I bade him fly a jack a little below the masthead.

    The Frozen Pirate

    W. Clark Russell

  • The Miles passed while he stood there, the American flag flying from her masthead.

British Dictionary definitions for masthead


  1. nautical
    1. the head of a mast
    2. (as modifier)masthead sail
  2. Also called: flag the name of a newspaper or periodical, its proprietors, staff, etc, printed in large type at the top of the front page
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verb (tr)
  1. to send (a sailor) to the masthead as a punishment
  2. to raise (a sail) to the masthead
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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

Word Origin and History for masthead


1748, "top of a ship's mast" (the place for the display of flags), hence, from 1838, "top of a newspaper;" from mast (n.1) + head (n.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper