\ ˈfler How to pronounce flair (audio) \

Definition of flair

1 : a skill or instinctive ability to appreciate or make good use of something : talent a flair for color also : inclination, tendency a flair for the dramatic
2 : a uniquely attractive quality : style fashionable dresses with a flair all their own Montreal is a city noted for its … European flair— Bruce Minorgan

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Did You Know?

In the 14th century, if someone told you that you had flair (or flayre as it was then commonly spelled), you might very well take offense! This is because in Middle English flayre meant "an odor." The word derived from the Old French verb flairer ("to give off an odor"), which came in turn from Late Latin flagrare, itself an alteration of fragrare. (The English words fragrant and fragrance also derive from fragrare.) The "odor" sense of flair fell out of use, but in the 19th century English speakers once again borrowed flair from the French-this time (influenced by the Modern French use of the word for the sense of smell) to indicate a discriminating sense or instinctive discernment.

Examples of flair in a Sentence

a restaurant with a European flair a person with a flair for making friends quickly

Recent Examples on the Web

Again, Kyler Murray showed some second-half flair, and Larry Fitzgerald went over 100 yards. The Mmqb Staff, SI.com, "NFL Power Rankings Poll Week 3: Cowboys, Niners and Bills (!) on the Rise," 17 Sep. 2019 The film has flair, a sense of style and drama, and of playfulness. Doreen St. Félix, The New Yorker, "“Midnight Traveler” Expands the Narrative of the Refugee Documentary," 17 Sep. 2019 Another highlight of the apartment is the media room, a relaxing space with a British flair and, of course, texture galore. Monique Valeris, ELLE Decor, "Thom Filicia's Latest New York Project is the Perfect Union of Classic and Modern Design," 13 Sep. 2019 Designed to safeguard the appearance, amenities and property values of the homes, the restrictions leave little room for personal flair, governing front-door colors, window coverings, plant choices — even how long a garage door can stay open. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Brit to HOA: ‘The flag is absolutely not coming down’," 1 Sep. 2019 Ron Wendt Designs imbued the room with a springtime flair, ornamenting cerulean tables with pink peonies and candlelight. Danielle Naer, Vogue, "It Was All Glitz and Glamour at Saks and Memorial Sloan Kettering’s Spring 2019 Ball," 22 May 2019 Enrique Mazzola conducted with the flair of someone who’s going places. Los Angeles Times, "Commentary: Where Barrie Kosky, Europe’s hot opera director, wants to make his American splash," 12 Sep. 2019 Unfortunately, however, Nick lacks the flair for Christmas that his sister Noelle has. Alexis Reliford, refinery29.com, "Anna Kendrick Is Coming For A Christmas Prince's Holiday Movie Crown," 24 Aug. 2019 The custom flair is compounded when the residential structure is dreamed up to become the visionary's actual home. Darla Guillen Gilthorpe, Houston Chronicle, "Midcentury-modern Austin home designed by esteemed Texas architect listed at $1.3M," 21 Aug. 2019

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

1881, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for flair

French, literally, sense of smell, from Old French, odor, from flairier to give off an odor, from Late Latin flagrare, alteration of Latin fragrare

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Dictionary Entries near flair



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Statistics for flair

Last Updated

13 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for flair

The first known use of flair was in 1881

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More Definitions for flair



English Language Learners Definition of flair

: a natural ability to do something
: an unusual and appealing quality or style


\ ˈfler How to pronounce flair (audio) \

Kids Definition of flair

1 : natural ability She has a flair for acting.
2 : style entry 1 sense 4 a dress with flair

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More from Merriam-Webster on flair

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with flair

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for flair

Spanish Central: Translation of flair

Nglish: Translation of flair for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of flair for Arabic Speakers

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