flay

play
verb \ˈflā\

Definition of flay

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to strip off the skin or surface of :  skin The hunter flayed the rabbit and prepared it for cooking.

  3. 2 :  to criticize harshly :  excoriate He was flayed by the media for his controversial comments.

  4. 3 :  lash 1b the wind whipped up to gale fury, flaying his face — Richard Kent

Examples of flay in a Sentence

  1. her husband flayed her constantly for her incessant shopping

  2. flayed their kill right there in the forest, taking both the meat and the skin home

Recent Examples of flay from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of flay

Middle English flen, from Old English flēan; akin to Old Norse flā to flay, Lithuanian plėšti to tear


FLAY Defined for English Language Learners

flay

play
verb

Definition of flay for English Language Learners

  • : to beat or whip (someone or something) in a very violent and severe way


FLAY Defined for Kids

flay

play
verb \ˈflā\

Definition of flay for Students

flayed

;

flaying

  1. 1 :  to strip off the skin or surface of

  2. 2 :  to beat severely



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up flay? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

set in a bent position

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Emoji Quiz

  • emoji-the-quiz
  • What phase of the moon is this: 🌖 ?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!