\ ə-ˈlȯft How to pronounce aloft (audio) \

Definition of aloft

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : at or to a great height measuring the winds aloft
2 : in the air especially : in flight (as in an airplane) meals served aloft
3 : at, on, or to the masthead or the higher rigging went aloft to unfurl the sails



Definition of aloft (Entry 2 of 2)

: on top of : above bright signs aloft hotels

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Synonyms & Antonyms for aloft

Synonyms: Adverb

Antonyms: Adverb

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Examples of aloft in a Sentence

Adverb The balloon stayed aloft for days. the ease with which he can hold a ballerina aloft with one hand is awesome
Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Under the watch of a ceremonial honor guard, the bride walked slowly down the aisle as a flock of young attendants held her 23-foot train aloft. Valerie Hopkins, New York Times, 1 Oct. 2021 The cat's fall was broken by an American flag, held aloft by some quick-thinking fans. Scooby Axson, USA TODAY, 12 Sep. 2021 In another, a girl was carried aloft by a giant balloon. Mary Carole Mccauley,, 15 Sep. 2021 Their faces form tree trunks that reach to a sky threaded with banners held aloft by cardinals. Rachel Cohen, Travel + Leisure, 19 Sep. 2021 But the stop sign being held aloft by the crossing guard is given short shrift in comparison. Lance Eliot, Forbes, 3 Sep. 2021 Thus far, there are no reports of actual tornadoes, but the supercell contained enough rotation aloft to concern forecasters. Washington Post, 1 Sep. 2021 But this waggish show, which enjoyed a cult moment on Broadway, is borne aloft on vintage music from the Go-Go’s. Los Angeles Times, 23 Aug. 2021 One of his landscapes depicted the Navajo Generating Station at Lake Powell, Ariz., in 1977, with a huge smoke plume leveled off in the sky by wind currents aloft., 19 Aug. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Preposition The Leicester fans held aloft the free commemorative scarves which were left on every seat inside the stadium and sang their late chairman’s name. San Diego Union-Tribune, 19 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'aloft.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of aloft


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for aloft


Middle English, from Old Norse ā lopt, from ā on, in + lopt air — more at on, loft


Middle English alofte, derivative of alofte aloft entry 1

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Time Traveler for aloft

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The first known use of aloft was in the 13th century

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Last Updated

17 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Aloft.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Oct. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of aloft

: in the air


\ ə-ˈlȯft How to pronounce aloft (audio) \

Kids Definition of aloft

: in the air or in flight The seven great birds stayed aloft about half an hour …— E. B. White, The Trumpet of the Swan

More from Merriam-Webster on aloft

Nglish: Translation of aloft for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of aloft for Arabic Speakers


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