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

  • n. A piece of cloth attached to a staff and used as a standard by a monarch, military commander, or knight.
  • n. The flag of a nation, state, or army.
  • n. A piece of cloth bearing a motto or legend, as of a club.
  • n. A headline spanning the width of a newspaper page.
  • n. Botany See standard.
  • adj. Unusually good; outstanding: a banner year for the company.
  • transitive v. Informal To give a banner headline to (a story or item) in a newspaper.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A flag or standard used by a military commander, monarch or nation.
  • n. Any large sign, especially if constructed of soft material or fabric.
  • n. A large piece of silk or other cloth, with a device or motto, extended on a crosspiece, and borne in a procession, or suspended in some conspicuous place.
  • n. By extension, a cause or purpose; a campaign or movement.
  • n. The title of a newspaper as printed on its front page; the nameplate; masthead.
  • n. A type of advertisement in a web page or on television, usually taking the form of a graphic or animation above or alongside the content. Contrast popup, interstitial.
  • n. The principal standard of a knight.
  • n. A person etc. who bans something.
  • adj. Exceptional; very good.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A kind of flag attached to a spear or pike by a crosspiece, and used by a chief as his standard in battle.
  • n. A large piece of silk or other cloth, with a device or motto, extended on a crosspiece, and borne in a procession, or suspended in some conspicuous place.
  • n. Any flag or standard.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The piece of cloth, attached to the upper part of a pole or staff, which in former times served as the standard of a sovereign, lord, or knight, after which he and his followers marched to war, and which served as a rallying-point in battle; hence, the flag or standard of a country, army, troop, etc.; a standard or ensign.
  • n. In heraldry, a square flag which in the middle ages was the ensign of a knight banneret.
  • n. An ensign or flag bearing a badge or emblem, as of a society or order, and borne in processions.
  • n. Figuratively, anything displayed as a profession of principles.
  • n. See ensign, flag, pennon, and standard.
  • n. In botany, the vexillum or upper petal of a papilionaceous flower. Also called the standard.
  • n. One of eight divisions into which the Manchus are marshaled, each with distinguishing flag or banner.
  • Leading or foremost in regard to some particular cause or matter, such as giving the largest majority to a political party, etc.

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

  • n. any distinctive flag
  • n. a newspaper headline that runs across the full page
  • adj. unusually good; outstanding
  • n. long strip of cloth or paper used for decoration or advertising


Middle English banere, from Old French baniere, from Vulgar Latin *bandāria, from Late Latin bandum, of Germanic origin; see bhā-1 in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Old French baniere (Modern bannière) of Germanic origin. More at band. (Wiktionary)


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