flair

noun
\ 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

Post-title-card, North appears in a long, white hallway dancing to the hit song with layered technicolor filters adding flair to the overall vibe. Teen Vogue, "North West Made Her Own Adorable Music Video for Lil Nas X's "Old Town Road"," 15 May 2019 Notable jewelry and statement headbands will add flair to pool-day looks or dinner attire. Leah Melby Clinton, Town & Country, "The 15 Most Stunning Pieces from Net-a-Porter's Colombian Collective," 15 Jan. 2019 In an ode to its American roots, Simons added Western flair to Calvin Klein denim and created cheeky pieces like Jaws T-shirts. Chavie Lieber, Vox, "The Calvin Klein brand hired big-name fashion designer Raf Simons to build relevancy. Now he’s out.," 27 Dec. 2018 The asymmetric neckline flattered Lady Gaga’s 5-foot-1 frame and furthermore showcased her signature sense of dramatic flair. Edward Barsamian, Vogue, "Red Carpet Rundown: 33 Memorable Looks From the Emmys," 17 Sep. 2018 Image Ella Brennan, the exacting matriarch of a New Orleans restaurant family whose flagship, Commander’s Palace, is renowned for serving a blend of Louisiana and nouvelle cuisines with generous, dramatic flair, died on Thursday in New Orleans. Richard Sandomir, New York Times, "Ella Brennan, Grande Dame Restaurateur of New Orleans, Dies at 92," 1 June 2018 Fabric can be tied back to draw attention to a corner seating area or draped over a high post to create dramatic flair. Detroit Free Press, "It’s all in the details: Get the outdoors ready for Memorial Day," 23 May 2018 Happy 3rd Birthday, #StyleSweetCA Here's one with five stripes of pastel frosting plus a whole lot of flair going on up top. Country Living, "You Will Not Be Able To Stop Watching This Mesmerizing Halloween Cake Video," 7 Oct. 2016 At 6-foot-7 and 285 pounds but with the agility, speed and flair of a guard, Williamson scored seven of Duke’s first nine points, including one rise-above-it-all put-back jam and, later, a 3-pointer. Howard Fendrich, The Seattle Times, "Zion, Duke avoid upset, edge Virginia Tech 75-73 in NCAAs," 30 Mar. 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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Learn More about flair

Dictionary Entries near flair

flail

flailing

flail tank

flair

flaith

flajolotite

flak

Statistics for flair

Last Updated

26 May 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

flair

noun

English Language Learners Definition of flair

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

flair

noun
\ 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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