flag

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English[edit]

Commons
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Pronunciation[edit]

  • (UK, US) IPA(key): /flæɡ/
  • (North American also) IPA(key): /fleɪɡ/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -æɡ, -eɪɡ

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English flag, flagge (flag), further etymology uncertain. Perhaps from or related to early Middle English flage (name for a baby's garment) and Old English flagg, flacg (cataplasm, poultice, plaster). Or, perhaps ultimately imitative, or otherwise drawn from Proto-Germanic *flaką (something flat), from Proto-Indo-European *pleh₂- (flat, broad, plain), referring to the shape.[1]

Germanic cognates include Saterland Frisian Flaage (flag), West Frisian flagge (flag), Dutch vlag (flag), German Flagge (flag), Swedish flagg (flag), Danish flag (flag, ship's flag). Compare also Middle English flacken (to flutter, palpitate), Swedish dialectal flage (to flutter in the wind), Old Norse flögra (to flap about). Akin to Old High German flogarōn (to flutter), Old High German flogezen (to flutter, flicker), Middle English flakeren (to move quickly to and fro), Old English flacor (fluttering, flying). More at flack, flacker.

A flag, namely of the Cretan Republic

Noun[edit]

flag (countable and uncountable, plural flags)

  1. A piece of cloth, often decorated with an emblem, used as a visual signal or symbol.
  2. An exact representation of a flag (for example: a digital one used in websites).
  3. (nautical) A flag flown by a ship to show the presence on board of the admiral; the admiral himself, or his flagship.
  4. (nautical, often used attributively) A signal flag.
  5. The use of a flag, especially to indicate the start of a race or other event.
  6. (computer science) A variable or memory location that stores a true-or-false, yes-or-no value, typically either recording the fact that a certain event has occurred or requesting that a certain optional action take place.
  7. (computer science) In a command line interface, a command parameter requesting optional behavior or otherwise modifying the action of the command being invoked.
  8. (aviation) A mechanical indicator that pops up to draw the pilot's attention to a problem or malfunction.
    • 1966, Barry J. Schiff, All about Flying: An Introduction to the World of Flying (page 72)
      I was shooting an IFR approach down the San Francisco slot, when all of a sudden the ILS flag popped up.
    • 1980, Paul Garrison, Flying VFR in marginal weather (page 139)
      [] and then the OFF flag popped up and the needle went dead.
  9. (Britain, uncountable) The game of capture the flag.
  10. (geometry) A sequence of faces of a given polytope, one of each dimension up to that of the polytope (formally, though in practice not always explicitly, including the null face and the polytope itself), such that each face in the sequence is part of the next-higher dimension face.
    • 1994, John Ratcliffe, Foundations of Hyperbolic Manifolds[1], page 230:
      A flag of P is a sequence (F0, F1, ..., Fm) of faces of P such that dim Fi = i for each i and Fi is a side of Fi+1 for each i < m. [] A regular polytope in X is a polytope P in X whose group of symmetries in <P> acts transitively on its flags.
    • 2002, Peter McMullen, Egon Schulte, Abstract Regular Polytopes, Encyclopedia of Mathematics and Its Applications 92, page 31,
      We call P (combinatorially) regular if its automorphism group Γ(P) is transitive on its flags.
    • 2006, Peter McMullen, Egon Schulte, Regular and Chiral Polytopes in Low Dimensions, Harold Scott Macdonald Coxeter, Chandler Davis, Erich W. Ellers (editors), The Coxeter Legacy: Reflections and Projections, page 91,
      Roughly speaking, chiral polytopes have half as many possible automorphisms as have regular polytopes. More technically, the n-polytope P is chiral if it has two orbits of flags under its group Γ(P), with adjacent flags in different orbits.
  11. (mathematics, linear algebra) A sequence of subspaces of a vector space, beginning with the null space and ending with the vector space itself, such that each member of the sequence (until the last) is a proper subspace of the next.
Synonyms[edit]
  • (computer science: true-or-false value): Boolean
  • (computer science: CLI notation): switch, option
  • (geometry: sequence of faces of a polytope): dart
Derived terms[edit]
Translations[edit]
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Verb[edit]

flag (third-person singular simple present flags, present participle flagging, simple past and past participle flagged)

  1. To furnish or deck out with flags.
  2. To mark with a flag, especially to indicate the importance of something.
    • 2011 January 8, Chris Bevan, “Arsenal 1 - 1 Leeds”, in BBC[2]:
      Walcott was, briefly, awarded a penalty when he was upended in the box but referee Phil Dowd reversed his decision because Bendtner had been flagged offside.
  3. (often with down) To signal to, especially to stop a passing vehicle etc.
    Please flag down a taxi for me.
  4. To convey (a message) by means of flag signals.
    to flag an order to troops or vessels at a distance
  5. (often with up) To note, mark or point out for attention.
    I've flagged up the need for further investigation into this.
    Users of the Internet forum can flag others' posts as inappropriate.
  6. (computing) To signal (an event).
    The compiler flagged three errors.
  7. (computing) To set a program variable to true.
    Flag the debug option before running the program.
  8. To decoy (game) by waving a flag, handkerchief, etc. to arouse the animal's curiosity.
    • 1885, Theodore Roosevelt, Hunting Trips of a Ranchman
      This method of hunting, however, is not so much practised now as formerly, as the antelope are getting continually shyer and more difficult to flag.
  9. (sports) To penalize for an infraction.
    The defender was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct.
  10. (chess) To defeat (an opponent) on time, especially in a blitz game.
Translations[edit]

See also[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Perhaps from a variant of flack (to hang loose), from Middle English flacken; or perhaps from Old Norse.[1]. Compare Middle Dutch flaggheren, vlaggheren (to droop, flag).

Verb[edit]

flag (third-person singular simple present flags, present participle flagging, simple past and past participle flagged)

  1. (intransitive) To weaken, become feeble.
    His strength flagged toward the end of the race.
    • 1724, Jonathan Swift, Drapier's Letters, 2
      He now sees a spirit has been raised against him, and he only watches till it begin to flag.
    • 2012 December 29, Paul Doyle, “Arsenal's Theo Walcott hits hat-trick in thrilling victory over Newcastle”, in The Guardian[3]:
      The sides took it in turns to err and excite before Newcastle flagged and Arsenal signalled their top-four credentials by blowing the visitors away.
  2. To hang loose without stiffness; to bend down, as flexible bodies; to be loose, yielding, limp.
  3. To let droop; to suffer to fall, or let fall, into feebleness.
    to flag the wings
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Prior to this entry?)
  4. To enervate; to exhaust the vigour or elasticity of.
    • 1670, John Eachard, The Ground and Occasions of the Contempt of the Clergy
      there is nothing that flags the Spirits, disorders the Blood, and enfeebles the whole Body of Man, as intense Studies.
Translations[edit]

Etymology 3[edit]

Of uncertain origin, perhaps from North Germanic; compare Danish flæg (yellow iris). Or, possibly from sense 1, referring to its motion in the wind. Compare also Dutch vlag.

Noun[edit]

flag (plural flags)

  1. Any of various plants with sword-shaped leaves, especially irises; specifically, Iris pseudacorus.
    • ca. 1607, William Shakespeare, Antony and Cleopatra, Act I, sc. 3:
      [T]he ebbed man, ne'er loved till ne'er worth love,
      Comes deared by being lacked. This common body,
      Like to a vagabond flag upon the stream,
      Goes to and back, lackeying the varying tide,
      To rot itself with motion.
    • 1611, King James Version, Job 8:11:
      Can the rush grow up without mire? can the flag grow without water?
    • before 1899, Robert Seymour Bridges, There is a Hill:
      And laden barges float
      By banks of myosote;
      And scented flag and golden flower-de-lys
      Delay the loitering boat.
Derived terms[edit]
Translations[edit]

Etymology 4[edit]

Probably of Scandinavian/North Germanic origin; compare Icelandic flag.

Noun[edit]

flag (plural flags)

  1. (obsolete except in dialects) A slice of turf; a sod.
  2. A slab of stone; a flagstone, a flat piece of stone used for paving.
  3. (geology) Any hard, evenly stratified sandstone, which splits into layers suitable for flagstones.
Translations[edit]

Verb[edit]

flag (third-person singular simple present flags, present participle flagging, simple past and past participle flagged)

  1. (transitive) To pave with flagstones.
    Fred is planning to flag his patio this weekend.
Translations[edit]

Etymology 5[edit]

Noun[edit]

flag (plural flags)

  1. A group of feathers on the lower part of the legs of certain hawks, owls, etc.
  2. A group of elongated wing feathers in certain hawks.
  3. The bushy tail of a dog such as a setter.
  4. (music) A hook attached to the stem of a written note that assigns its rhythmic value

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 flag” in Douglas Harper, Online Etymology Dictionary, 2001–2020.

Chinese[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from Japanese フラグ, from English flag.

Definitions[edit]

flag

  1. (Internet slang) A plot or words of a character in an animation, etc., that would usually lead to a specific outcome or event, not logically or causally, but as a pattern of the animation, etc., for example the words like "I will stop doing evil after this one last job" from a character, who usually would not survive the "job". Also figurative.
    死亡flag  ―  sǐwáng flag  ―  the words of a character which, as a pattern, usually follows the character's death
  2. goal; resolution; statement of intent
    新年flag  ―  xīnnián flag  ―  New Year resolutions
    flag  ―  flag  ―  to set up a goal
    flag  ―  Tāde flag dǎole.  ―  He didn't achieve the goal.

Danish[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Dutch or English flag

Noun[edit]

flag n (singular definite flaget, plural indefinite flag)

  1. flag (cloth)
  2. flag (true-false variable)

Inflection[edit]

Verb[edit]

flag

  1. imperative of flage

Dutch[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From English flag.

Noun[edit]

flag m (plural flags, diminutive flagje n)

  1. (computing) flag

Icelandic[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old Norse flag, flaga, probably from Proto-Germanic *flaką (something flat), from Proto-Indo-European *pleh₂- (flat, broad, plain). However, compare Proto-Germanic *plaggą.[1]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

flag n (genitive singular flags, nominative plural flög)

  1. area of ground stripped of turf

Declension[edit]

Related terms[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ flag” in Douglas Harper, Online Etymology Dictionary, 2001–2020.

Portuguese[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From English flag.

Noun[edit]

flag m or f (in variation) (plural flags)

  1. (programming) flag (true-or-false variable)
    Synonym: booleano