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1

fleer

play
verb \ˈflir\

Definition of fleer

  1. intransitive verb
  2. :  to laugh or grimace in a coarse derisive manner :  sneer

fleeringly

play \-iŋ-lē\ adverb


Origin and Etymology of fleer

Middle English fleryen, of Scandinavian origin; akin to Norwegian flire to giggle


First Known Use: 15th century

Synonym Discussion of fleer

scoff, jeer, gibe, fleer, sneer, flout mean to show one's contempt in derision or mockery. scoff stresses insolence, disrespect, or incredulity as motivating the derision <scoffed at their concerns>. jeer suggests a coarser more undiscriminating derision <the crowd jeered at the prisoners>. gibe implies taunting either good-naturedly or in sarcastic derision <hooted and gibed at the umpire>. fleer suggests grinning or grimacing derisively <the saucy jackanapes fleered at my credulity>. sneer stresses insulting by contemptuous facial expression, phrasing, or tone of voice <sneered at anything romantic>. flout stresses contempt shown by refusal to heed <flouted the conventions of polite society>.

2

fleer

noun

Definition of fleer

  1. :  a word or look of derision or mockery



Did You Know?

Fleer first appeared in English as a verb (fleryen in Middle English) meaning "to laugh, grin, or grimace in a coarse manner." The verb is of Scandinavian origin and is akin to the Norwegian flire, meaning "to giggle." The noun fleer first and most famously appeared in William Shakespeare's tragedy Othello, in which the evil Iago invites Othello to observe the signs of his wife's unfaithfulness in the visage of her supposed lover, Cassio: "And mark the fleers, the gibes, and notable scorns / That dwell in every region of his face…."

1604

First Known Use of fleer

1604


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