Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An inflatable, vestlike life preserver.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Nickname for a type of life jacket used by Allied forces in World War II having an inflatable rubber bag on the chest of the wearer.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • proper n. An inflatable life jacket, originally used as a personal flotation device by aviators downed at sea.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. United States film actress (1892-1980)
  • n. an inflatable life jacket

Etymologies

After Mae West (from its resemblance to her curvaceous torso).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Named after the actress and sex symbol Mae West, who was well known during the war. The inflatable front was taken to be like her busty figure. (Wiktionary)

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