[pen-uh n]


a distinctive flag in any of various forms, as tapering, triangular, or swallow-tailed, formerly one borne on the lance of a knight.
a pennant.
any flag or banner.
a wing or pinion.

Origin of pennon

1325–75; Middle English penon < Middle French, augmentative of Old French pene < Latin penna or pinna feather. See pen1
Related formspen·noned, adjectiveun·pen·noned, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for pennon

color, symbol, ensign, streamer, pennant, banner, jack, pinion, gonfalon

Examples from the Web for pennon

Historical Examples of pennon

  • Close by the stern stood Black Simon with the pennon of the house of Loring.

    The White Company

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • What is the use of a shield on a wall, or a lance that has a cobweb for a pennon?


    William Makepeace Thackeray

  • He needed his Squire at his side, for his pennon was in the breeze once more.

    Sir Nigel

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • The banner of the Cid was green, Miss Adister: or else it's his pennon that was.

  • The Pennon is a small, narrow flag, forked or swallow-tailed at its extremity.

    The Flags of the World

    F. Edward Hulme

British Dictionary definitions for pennon



a long flag, often tapering and rounded, divided, or pointed at the end, originally a knight's personal flag
a small tapering or triangular flag borne on a ship or boat
a poetic word for wing

Word Origin for pennon

C14: via Old French ultimately from Latin penna feather
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 pennon

long, narrow flag (often triangular or swallow-tailed), late 14c., from Old French penon "feathers of an arrow; streamer, flag, banner," from penne "feather," from Latin penna "feather" (see pen (n.1)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper