Last modified on 30 May 2014, at 18:40




signal +‎ -ese


signalese (plural signaleses)

  1. Words and abbreviations used by radio operators and other signalmen to clarify the letters that they were sending and receiving, such as the RAF phonetic alphabet.
    • 1967, Lawrence Wright, The Wooden Sword, page 164
      The signalese for 'S/L' I could decipher, but the NMI defeated me, until I learned that it referred to the fact, an oddity to Americans, that I had 'No Middle Initial'.
    • 1990, Ken Bradstreet, Hellcats
      The signal "dit-dah-dit- dit-dit" which, in signalese meant "wait", was heard a lot while we attempted to decipher what it was the operator on the other end
    • 2006, Ian Pfennigwerth, A Man of Intelligence: The Life of Captain Eric Nave, Australian Codebreaker, page 47
      The commodore's staff prepares the necessary message using a standardised jargon used by the Navy, sometimes referred to as 'signalese'.