Meaning of SEMAPHORE in English


I. ˈseməˌfō(ə)r, -fȯ(ə)r, -ōə, -ȯ(ə) noun

( -s )

Usage: often attributive

Etymology: International Scientific Vocabulary sema- (from Greek sēma sign) + -phore; perhaps originally formed as French sémaphore

1. : an apparatus for visual signaling (as by the position of one or more movable arms): as

a. or semaphore telegraph : one of a series of apparatuses on towers used formerly for rapid visual communication by means of code combinations of the positions of originally movable shutters and later of two movable arms

b. : a mechanical signal for railway traffic consisting of an upright post with an arm moving in a vertical plane for day signals and colored lights for night signals

2. : a system of visual signaling (as between ships) in which the sender holds a flag in each hand and moves his arms to different positions according to a code alphabet — compare wigwag

[s]semaphor.jpg[/s] [

semaphore 2: alphabet; 3 positions following Z: error, end of word, numerals follow; numerals 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 0 same as A through J


II. verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

: to signal by or as if by semaphore

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.