The New International Encyclopædia/Pennant
PENNANT (variant of pennon, with excrescent t, possibly associated by popular etymology with pendant, from OF., Fr. pennon, sort of flag, augmentative of OF. penne, from Lat. penna, feather, wing). A narrow flag or streamer tapering from the “hoist” to the “fly” or tip. In the signal codes pennants are two to five times as long as they are wide. The old commodores' ‘broad pennant’ was a ‘swallow-tail' flag. The pennant of the ‘senior officer present' is blue and nearly equilateral. The narrow pennant worn by all vessels commissioned in the Government service is carried at the main and signifies that she is of a public character. See Colored Plates of Flags of the United States, and International Signal Code with the article Signals, Marine.