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

  • n. A warning signal.
  • n. Something that demands attention or provokes an irritated reaction.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A cue, warning, or alert; a sign or signal that something is wrong.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. a flag of a red color, displayed as a signal of danger or token of defiance; the emblem of anarchists.
  • adj. See under Flag.

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

  • n. the emblem of socialist revolution
  • n. something that irritates or demands immediate action
  • n. a flag that serves as a warning signal


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • I heard that a lot of people were getting silicone injections, which offered permanent results I know; most logical people would see a big red flag there, but not me, Little Miss Gullible.


  • At Naxos the German commander surrendered by mistake; he had rowed out to greet a boat that he thought was flying the red flag of the swastika, but was in fact flying the Red Ensign.

    Captain Corelli's Mandolin

  • If I yielded to temptation and tried it, a red flag would go up for sure, and in thirty seconds max a representative of the Department of Consumer Affairs would be at my door.

    Till the Butchers Cut Him Down

  • In Italy, students protesting inadequate facilities carried a long red flag from building to building on the University of Rome campus as the university was reopened after being closed for twelve days in mid-March because of violence.

    1968 the Year that Rocked the World

  • When I found it, it looked like the development was right smack on top of a major break in slope, which is all it takes to raise a red flag with any geologist: it says, "possible fault."

    Fault Line

  • I went into the living room and wrote out a two-thousand-dollar check to be applied against her registration and dormitory fees for her first semester, placed a stamp on the return envelope, and walked out to the road and stuck it in the mailbox, then flipped up the red flag for the postman.

    Jolie Blon’s Bounce

  • Jhenda release deferred after Nitesh Rane shows red flag film Jhenda on Thursday decided to postpone the film's release after revenue minister - Articles related to Fashion Week boosts Berlin's economy by $44 million dollars (slide show)

  • The tourist need not turn aside to seek evidences: he will very readily observe the red flag of the auctioneer floating over the slave pen, on which he may read in large letters, waving in the pure air of heaven, “SLAVES, HORSES, AND OTHER CATTLE, in lots to suit purchasers!”

    Twenty-Two Years a Slave, and Forty Years a Freeman

  • Andrew Cunningham, a zoologist with the Zoological Society of London, recently raised a red flag about new viruses emerging from global encroachment into wildlife in an essay in the British medical journal BMJ, arguing that while this has probably happened many times in the past, such viruses failed to spread because those infected lived in remote enough areas that they either died or got well before they interacted with larger human populations.

    The Autoimmune Epidemic

  • However, what I saw was more than a potential red flag for the Red Sox Nation.

    One Season


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  • Why do I have a red flag on my screen whenever I'm on the home page these days? Was it decided democratically in my absence? Can't believe it's Google.

    March 18, 2009

  • The red flag flies at dawn.

    Seriously, I have one (actually two) of these on my work desk. They are a recently adopted office-wide signal (when placed atop the cubicle cabinet for all to see) that the person is on the phone or seriously busy and desires quiet.

    January 23, 2008