noun (1)
\ ˈflȯ How to pronounce flaw (audio) \

Definition of flaw

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a defect in physical structure or form a diamond with a flaw
b : an imperfection or weakness and especially one that detracts from the whole or hinders effectiveness vanity was the flaw in his character a flaw in the book's plot
2 obsolete : fragment


flawed; flawing; flaws

Definition of flaw (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to make flaws in : mar

intransitive verb

: to become defective


noun (2)

Definition of flaw (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a sudden brief burst of wind the wind changed with flaws from westward— Archibald MacLeish also : a spell of stormy weather
2 obsolete : an outburst especially of passion

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Examples of flaw in a Sentence

Verb that crack has flawed the vase to the extent that its value in the antiques market is greatly reduced

First Known Use of flaw

Noun (1)

1586, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1610, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Noun (2)

1513, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for flaw

Noun (1) and Verb

Middle English, flake, from Old Norse flaga stone slab, moldar flaga thin layer of turf; akin to Old English flōh flat stone

Noun (2)

of Scandinavian origin; akin to Norwegian flaga gust, squall

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Cite this Entry

“Flaw.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/flaw. Accessed 8 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
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More Definitions for flaw


\ ˈflȯ How to pronounce flaw (audio) \

Kids Definition of flaw

: a small fault or weakness There is a flaw in the plan.

Other Words from flaw

flawless \ -​ləs \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on flaw

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for flaw

Nglish: Translation of flaw for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of flaw for Arabic Speakers

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