A flag; a banner; a standard; esp., the national flag, or a banner indicating nationality, carried by a ship or a body of soldiers; -- as distinguished from flags indicating divisions of the army, rank of naval officers, or private signals, and the like.
- A national flag displayed on ships and aircraft, often with the special insignia of a branch or unit of the armed forces.
- A standard or banner, as of a military unit.
- Archaic A standard-bearer.
- A commissioned rank in the U.S. Navy or Coast Guard that is below lieutenant junior grade.
- One who holds this rank.
- A badge of office or power; an emblem: "I want the seals of power and place,/The ensigns of command,/Charged by the people's unbought grace,/To rule my native land” ( John Quincy Adams).
- A sign; a token.