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Meaning of half-mast

half-mast

Pronunciation: (haf'mast', häf'mäst'), [key]
— n.
  1. a position approximately halfway between the top of a mast, staff, etc., and its base.
—v.t.
  1. to place (a flag) at half-mast, as a mark of respect for the dead or as a signal of distress.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.