fla·​grant | \ ˈflā-grənt also ˈfla- \

Definition of flagrant

1 archaic : fiery hot : burning
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

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Other Words from flagrant

flagrantly adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for 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

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").

Examples of flagrant in a Sentence

flagrant abuse of the law her flagrant disregard for other people's rights

Recent Examples on the Web

For most of American history, the insane scope of the pardon power has been kept in check by norms, and the understanding that flagrant abuse of the authority would come at a steep political price. Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "New York AG Calls for Closing Presidential Pardon Loophole," 18 Apr. 2018 For one thing, Trump is acting in flagrant defiance of longstanding Republican party dogma, which has for better or worse endorsed free trade as an unmitigated good. Jonathan Chait, Daily Intelligencer, "Paul Ryan Unaware Constitution Lets Congress Override Presidential Veto," 12 July 2018 Terry is really the fountainhead there -- Steve Reich is an offshoot, and often a flagrant copier in the early days. Joe Lynch, Billboard, "Jon Hassell at 81: Visionary Composer-Trumpeter Reflects on a Half Century of Music on His Own Terms," 28 June 2018 Not even the God of the Southern Baptists or of evangelical Christian Franklin Graham, who has embraced and excused our president’s every flagrant sin before now, but who has finally drawn a line here. Yvonne Abraham, BostonGlobe.com, "Hey undocumented immigrants, it’s all your fault," 16 June 2018 Media: Sports Illustrated Love left the bench to argue the flagrant call and was on the court when the altercation started. Josh Dubow, Houston Chronicle, "Cavs' Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson avoid suspension for Game 1 altercation," 2 June 2018 The rule is bizarre—all non-flagrant contact fouls are left to a referee's judgement and deemed unreviewable, except in this specific instance—and even the apparently correct application prompts a double take. Andrew Sharp, SI.com, "An Inexplicable Calls Stains a Legendary NBA Finals Thriller," 1 June 2018 Driving to the basket with the game tied, U of L’s Myisha Hines-Allen was knocked off-course by a flagrant hip check from the Bulldogs' Teaira McCowan, and with no call. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "NCAA's lash leaves no mark on U of L's women's coach Jeff Walz," 26 May 2018 Notwithstanding the shaky ethics of a London P.R. firm inflaming a debate about racial and economic inequality in South Africa in order to benefit a rich family with government connections, the Oakbay work was a flagrant conflict of interest. Ed Caesar, The New Yorker, "The Reputation-Laundering Firm That Ruined Its Own Reputation," 25 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'flagrant.' 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 flagrant

1513, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for flagrant

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

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Last Updated

7 Feb 2019

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Time Traveler for flagrant

The first known use of flagrant was in 1513

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More Definitions for flagrant



English Language Learners Definition of flagrant

: very bad : too bad to be ignored


fla·​grant | \ ˈflā-grənt \

Kids Definition of flagrant

: so bad as to be impossible to overlook a flagrant lie

Other Words from flagrant

flagrantly adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on flagrant

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with flagrant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for flagrant

Spanish Central: Translation of flagrant

Nglish: Translation of flagrant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of flagrant for Arabic Speakers

Comments on flagrant

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


to deny responsibility for

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