Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary


adjective fla·grant \ˈflā-grənt also ˈfla-\

Simple Definition of flagrant

  • : very bad : too bad to be ignored

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of flagrant

  1. 1 archaic :  fiery hot :  burning

  2. 2 :  conspicuously offensive <flagrant errors>; especially :  so obviously inconsistent with what is right or proper as to appear to be a flouting of law or morality <flagrant violations of human rights>

flagrantly adverb

Examples of flagrant in a sentence

  1. flagrant abuse of the law

  2. her flagrant disregard for other people's rights

Did You Know?

In Latin, flagrare means "to burn," and flagrans means "burning" or "fiery hot" (both literally and figuratively). When it was first used in the 16th century, "flagrant" had the same meaning as "flagrans," but by the 18th century it had acquired its current meaning of "conspicuously bad." Some usage commentators warn against using "flagrant" and "blatant" interchangeably. While both words denote conspicuousness, they are not exact synonyms. "Blatant" is usually used of some person, action, or thing that attracts disapproving attention (e.g., "a blatant grammatical error"). "Flagrant" is used similarly, but usually carries a heavier weight of violated morality (e.g., "flagrant abuse of public office").

Origin of flagrant

Latin flagrant-, flagrans, present participle of flagrare to burn — more at black

First Known Use: 1513

Synonym Discussion of flagrant

flagrant, glaring, gross, rank mean conspicuously bad or objectionable. flagrant applies usually to offenses or errors so bad that they can neither escape notice nor be condoned <flagrant abuse of the office of president>. glaring implies painful or damaging obtrusiveness of something that is conspicuously wrong, faulty, or improper <glaring errors>. gross implies the exceeding of reasonable or excusable limits <gross carelessness>. rank applies to what is openly and extremely objectionable and utterly condemned <rank heresy>.

Rhymes with flagrant

FLAGRANT Defined for Kids


adjective fla·grant \ˈflā-grənt\

Definition of flagrant for Students

  1. :  so bad as to be impossible to overlook <a flagrant lie>

flagrantly adverb

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up flagrant? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to dishevel or rumple

Get Word of the Day daily email!


Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!


Which of these is a synonym of nonplus?

soothe perplex reduce disapprove
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.