fla·​neur | \ flä-ˈnər How to pronounce flaneur (audio) \
variants: or less commonly flâneur

Definition of flaneur

: an idle man-about-town

Examples of flaneur in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The flaneur was a familiar figure in nineteenth-century Paris: a solitary, quasi-artistic man (though not always) who strolled the streets like an urban epicure. Julian Barnes, The New York Review of Books, 27 Apr. 2022 In my conception, to visit Wikipedia was to be a flaneur, wandering unharmed from interesting edifice to interesting edifice. Noam Cohen, Wired, 4 Jan. 2021 How a Person Became a User — which imagines the lurker as a kind of twenty-first century flaneur — Adrian Daub writes that now, in the Age of the Virus, many of us, the inessential us, have become real-life lurkers. Dana Snitzky, Longreads, 14 Apr. 2020 Just as the nineteenth-century flaneur gets intoxicated on a strange mix of empathy and detachment, the lurker sees their historic moment by being above it and very much ensconced in it. Adrian Daub, The New Republic, 13 Apr. 2020 But there are still ways to be on the move, whether it’s Parisians, who can be flaneurs on their city streets again, or Americans, who are taking to their backyards for campouts. Susan Seubert, National Geographic, 13 May 2020 Benfey strolls through Kipling’s American years with the sensibility of a flaneur, pausing here over particular points of interest, turning back there for another look. Maya Jasanoff, The New Republic, 22 Aug. 2019 At the end of the nineteenth century, the aviator was the flaneur of the firmament, and a trip in a hot-air balloon was seen to be just as health-giving as a hotel in the mountains. María Gainza, Harper's magazine, 10 May 2019 But his flaneur’s approach to life and style is best embodied on the back of his favorite vest. Matt Goulet, Esquire, 18 Sep. 2017 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'flaneur.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of flaneur

1854, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for flaneur

French flâneur

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The first known use of flaneur was in 1854

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Last Updated

11 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Flaneur.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/flaneur. Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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