flank

noun
\ ˈflaŋk How to pronounce flank (audio) \

Definition of flank

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the fleshy part of the side between the ribs and the hip broadly : the side of a quadruped She gently patted the horse's flank.
b : a cut of meat from this part of an animal — see beef illustration
2a : side the eastern flank of a volcano
b : the right or left of a formation attacked the enemy on both flanks
3 : the area along either side of a heraldic shield

flank

verb
flanked; flanking; flanks

Definition of flank (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to be situated at the side of especially : to be situated on both sides of a road flanked with linden trees
b : to place something on each side of
2 : to protect a flank of
3 : to attack or threaten the flank of (as a body of troops)

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Examples of flank in a Sentence

Noun

She gently patted the horse's flank. They attacked the enemy on both flanks. the eastern flank of a volcano

Verb

the guards flank the center on a football team's offensive line
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Mount Diablo, Walnut Creek: Some fog events will stream like a wave across the entire Bay Area up and then abut the western flank of Mount Diablo. Tom Stienstra, SFChronicle.com, "’Tis the season for ‘Dancing with Fog’," 12 July 2018 White House officials helped craft the measure, which straddled the party’s far-right flank and its centrist membership. Time, "President Trump Is Making It Harder for Congress to Stop Family Separations," 19 June 2018 The least common type of UTI, a kidney infection (acute pyelonephritis), can cause flank pain, fever, chills, nausea, and vomiting. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "Here’s Why You Should Always Wipe Front-to-Back," 9 Mar. 2019 Pavard has been one of the revelations of the World Cup, tearing up and down France's right flank and forming a fearsome, incisive partnership with teenage sensation Kylian Mbappe . John Leicester, chicagotribune.com, "Without parents' sacrifices, there would not be World Cup stars," 9 July 2018 That has been part of broader international scrutiny of cyber vulnerabilities in NATO’s eastern flank, a front line for cyberattacks against U.S. allies. Yaroslav Trofimov, WSJ, "Chinese Huawei Executive Is Charged With Espionage in Poland," 11 Jan. 2019 Another battle to watch will play out on the Croatian right flank, between right-back Sime Vrsaljko and world soccer’s new star, French left winger and brilliant teenage speedster Kylian Mbappe. John Kass, chicagotribune.com, "Joy of Chicago's Croatians cresting as World Cup final with France approaches," 13 July 2018 The strength of both sides is the force and flair of their midfields and flanks, where stars like France’s N’Golo Kanté and Kylian Mbappé, and Croatia’s Luka Modrić and Ivan Rakitić have put their stamp on this World Cup. Brian Straus, SI.com, "France vs. Croatia: A First Look at Their World Cup Final Matchup," 11 July 2018 Nouhou raced along the left flank in one of his patented, break-neck rushes that typically lifts fans out of their seasts. Geoff Baker, The Seattle Times, "Sounders get needed early goal en route to blowout of Houston," 8 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In her Instagram shot, which was taken in New York City, Duff is smiling from ear-to-ear, showing off what appears to be a cushion cut engagement ring, set on either a split shank band or flanked with trillions. Carrie Goldberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Hilary Duff Is Officially Engaged to Matthew Koma," 9 May 2019 Frontal assaults, flanking maneuvers, and ambushes—these were the simple tactics employed in pitched battles from the Battle of Marathon in 490 BC continuing through the time of the Roman Empire, into the Middle Ages, and beyond. William Gurstelle, Popular Mechanics, "How to Storm a Castle," 11 Apr. 2019 Guests climbed the stairs, which were flanked with staff holding colorful parasols, to the red gates of Chinatown 90210. Vogue, "The Chiu Family Brings Chinatown to the 90210," 22 Feb. 2019 The touch screen, flanked with a tuning AND volume knob is mounted high in the dash, which takes away from the overall neat design. Robert Duffer, chicagotribune.com, "Believe the hype: 2018 Honda Accord is that good," 25 Jan. 2018 With motion and multiple-receiver sets and backs flanked out and tight ends split wide, how do the seven men figure out who’s watching which players? Peter King, SI.com, "Game 150: The Crew," 5 Dec. 2013 The credenza was flanked by oil paintings of Swift's cats, as well as a rendering of the Dixie Chicks (which has prompted more than a little speculation on their possible contribution to a forthcoming album). Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "All the Home Decor Items You Can Shop in Taylor Swift's "ME" Video," 26 Apr. 2019 Honoree Pierpaolo Piccioli, creative director of Valentino, was flanked by supermodel Naomi Campbell in a strikingly elegant gold gown. Keaton Bell, Vogue, "See Taylor Swift and All the Celebrities Who Attended the Time 100 Gala," 24 Apr. 2019 The ring in question, which appears to have a gold band with a large center stone, is flanked by two others on her middle and pinky fingers, as Elle notes. Nicole Briese, Allure, "Emma Stone Sparks Massive Engagement Rumors Due to Ring Finger Accessory," 7 Apr. 2019

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

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1594, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for flank

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Old French flanc, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German hlanca loin, flank — more at lank

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Statistics for flank

Last Updated

17 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for flank

The first known use of flank was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for flank

flank

noun

English Language Learners Definition of flank

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the area on the side of an animal (such as a horse) between the ribs and the hip
: the right or left side of a military formation
: the side of something

flank

verb

English Language Learners Definition of flank (Entry 2 of 2)

: to be located on both sides of (something or someone)

flank

noun
\ ˈflaŋk How to pronounce flank (audio) \

Kids Definition of flank

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the area on the side of an animal between the ribs and the hip
2 : side entry 1 sense 3 the mountain's flank
3 : the right or left side of a formation (as of soldiers)

flank

verb
flanked; flanking

Kids Definition of flank (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to be located at the side of With two rats flanking him, the Father Abbot stepped forward …— Brian Jacques, Redwall
2 : to attack or threaten the side of We've flanked the enemy troops.

flank

noun
\ ˈflaŋk How to pronounce flank (audio) \

Medical Definition of flank

: the fleshy part of the side between the ribs and the hip broadly : the side of a quadruped

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More from Merriam-Webster on flank

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with flank

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for flank

Spanish Central: Translation of flank

Nglish: Translation of flank for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of flank for Arabic Speakers

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