\ ˈflip How to pronounce flip (audio) \
flipped; flipping

Definition of flip

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to toss so as to cause to turn over in the air flip a coin flip a pancake also : toss flip me the ball flip one end of the scarf over your shoulder
2a : to cause to turn and especially to turn over flipped the car flipping the pages of a book
b : to move with a small quick motion flip a switch
c : to turn (something) on or off with a switch flip on/off the lights
d : to change or move through (channels, stations, etc.) quickly flipping channels with the remote control
3 : to buy and usually renovate (real estate) so as to quickly resell at a higher price He's flipped three houses for a substantial profit.
4 : to cause or persuade (a witness) to cooperate in prosecuting a criminal case against an associate … wrote that the … probe seemed to have reached the stage where investigators are in the process of flipping witnesses.— Nancy LeTourneau

intransitive verb

1 : to make a twitching or flicking movement the fish flipped and flopped on the deck
2a : to turn or roll from one side to the other : turn over The crab had flipped onto its back. The car flipped over.
b : to do a somersault in the air : to do a flip He flipped off the diving board.
3a : to change from one state, position, subject, etc., to another The job market flipped from hot to cold. The commercial flipped back and forth between scenes of country life and city life.
b : to change or move through channels, pages, etc. He sat on the couch flipping through the channels. flip to another station flip through the pages of a magazine
c : to cooperate in the prosecution of a criminal case against an associate Before sentencing, two more members defected…. And, soon after receiving his 45-year sentence in May 1989, Leonetti flipped, too.— Marguerite Del Giudice
4 slang
a : to lose one's mind or composure often used with outThe patient flipped out in manic behavior.She flipped out when she heard about her son's accident.
b : to become very enthusiastic
flip the script
: to achieve an outcome or adopt an approach that is opposite to or completely different from what has happened or been done previously Now, having won three of the last nine majors, Mickelson has flipped the script on Woods.— Alan Shipnuck … the chance to flip the script, to go from 0-6 with a chance to finish the second half of the year 5-1, is motivating Nebraska players this week.— Steve Batterson If you let your inner critic do all the talking, of course she's going to chip away at your self-esteem. Make a conscious choice to flip the script for the next week and see how dramatically it alters your outlook.— Petra Guglielmetti



Definition of flip (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : a mixed drink usually consisting of a sweetened spiced liquor with beaten eggs
2 : an act or instance of flipping
3 : the motion used in flipping
4 : a somersault especially in the air
5 : a holder for a collectible coin made of vinyl or cardboard with a plastic window and often having a sleeve in which to place an identifying insert

Definition of flip (Entry 3 of 3)

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Synonyms & Antonyms for flip

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of flip in a Sentence

Verb She was sitting in the waiting room, flipping the pages of a magazine. His car flipped over on the interstate. Noun the flip of a coin She turned on the lights with the flip of a switch. Adjective made some flip comment about the marriage between the old man and the considerably younger woman
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb That could be enough to flip the House to Republicans and put McCarthy in charge as speaker. Joe Garofoli, SFChronicle.com, "What’s at stake for California in Georgia vote to determine Senate control," 5 Jan. 2021 Its mission was not to flip a switch overnight, but to encourage the mammoth palm oil industry to evolve after years of breakneck growth and little outside oversight. oregonlive, "Child labor in palm oil industry tied to popular U.S. brands, including Girl Scout cookies," 30 Dec. 2020 Using tongs or a spatula, carefully flip, and fry the other side until golden and just starting to melt, another 2 minutes. Washington Post, "Flaming cheese saganaki to make everyone say ‘opa!’," 28 Dec. 2020 That would allow some companies to flip the switch on cell-tower gear that is already transmitting data on other frequencies--just not the bands in question. Drew Fitzgerald, WSJ, "5G Auction Shatters Record as Bidding Tops $69 Billion," 23 Dec. 2020 This will mean something different for everyone, but try to flip your ideal Saturday completely on its head (except perhaps for caffeine consumption, which has no place in your nighttime routine). Popular Science, "Stuck at home? Trick your brain into treating a staycation like the real thing.," 22 Dec. 2020 This will get you more power, a nicer looking screen and the potential to flip back and forth between a tablet and laptop. Jefferson Graham, USA TODAY, "Consumer guide: Laptops, from $200 to $1,000 and beyond," 10 Dec. 2020 The district was a target for Republicans this cycle to flip back after losing it to Democrats in 2018 by fewer than 1,000 votes. Kerry Picket, Washington Examiner, "COVID-19 scare delays results in close California congressional race," 11 Nov. 2020 Now, there’s a chance the seat could flip back to red as Republican Orange County Supervisor Michelle Steel challenges Rouda. Amina Khan Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "Coronavirus Today: ‘Normality’ in 2022?," 29 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Trump also abandoned a proposal to restart licensing at Nevada’s Yucca Mountain to store the nuclear waste, in an election year flip-flop, prolonging the government’s perennial struggle to find a permanent storage site. Josh Siegel, Washington Examiner, "Trump officials claim legacy of 'groundwork' for nuclear breakthrough," 29 Nov. 2020 Don’t walk around barefoot — wear shoes or flip flops. Amina Khan Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "Coronavirus Today: A glimmer of hope," 9 Nov. 2020 Freed from the expectations of premieres, awards shows, and public events, many stars have taken a relaxed approach to style, trading their stilettos for sneakers and flip flops. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "Victoria Beckham Goes Boho Spice in '70s Florals," 24 Aug. 2020 She was last seen wearing a dark blue tie dye shirt, shorts and flip flops. Howard Koplowitz | Hkoplowitz@al.com, al, "Authorities searching for ‘endangered’ 41-year-old woman who disappeared in Enterprise," 22 June 2020 It’s a welcome flip of the script from TV’s traditional period romances. Los Angeles Times, "Review: Jane Austen meets hookup culture in Netflix’s exquisitely silly ‘Bridgerton’," 21 Dec. 2020 Mahomes later used an underhanded forward flip to Kelce for a 2-point conversion after a 12-yard touchdown run by Le’Veon Bell to make it 29-15 in the fourth quarter. oregonlive, "Patrick Mahomes outduels Drew Brees as Kansas City outlasts the New Orleans Saints: Recap, score, stats and more," 20 Dec. 2020 Mahomes used an underhanded forward flip to Kelce in the fourth quarter on a 2-point conversion that made it 29-15 after a 12-yard TD run by Le’Veon Bell. Brett Martel, SFChronicle.com, "Patrick Mahomes’ theatrics highlight Chiefs’ win over Saints," 20 Dec. 2020 Big city restaurant owners in New York and California are frustrated after lawmakers banned indoor dining and flip-flopped on bathroom restrictions, driving away even more of their customers amid the worsening coronavirus pandemic. Vandana Rambaran, Fox News, "NY, CA restaurants crushed by government's impulsive COVID-19 decisions, owners say," 18 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Carefully flip patties and sear reverse side, 1-2 minutes for medium-rare. Kitty Greenwald, WSJ, "A Great Way to Cook Steak at Home, According to a Top Chef," 21 Dec. 2020 The Patriots won the game by coin-flip luck of getting the ball first in overtime. Dave Hyde, sun-sentinel.com, "Hyde: Only Dan Marino understands what Patrick Mahomes is going through | Commentary," 10 Dec. 2020 Besides the usual Galaxy S20 and Galaxy Note 20, there was the phone/tablet hybrid, the Galaxy Z Fold 2, and a foldable flip phone, the Galaxy Z Flip. Ron Amadeo, Ars Technica, "Samsung will reportedly kill the Note line to focus on foldables," 1 Dec. 2020 My trunk was full of colorful posters, flip charts, and laminated quotes from my favorite writers. Clint Smith, The Atlantic, "Teaching Should Be Political," 11 Nov. 2020 At one point, Mr. Schumer held up his flip phone so Mr. Biden could hear people cheering for him in Brooklyn. Thomas Kaplan, New York Times, "Biden, Now President-Elect, Calls for End to ‘Grim Era of Demonization’," 7 Nov. 2020 Schumer called while en route to a celebration in Brooklyn, holding his flip phone out the window so that Biden could hear the cheering crowd. Matt Viser, Star Tribune, "Biden plans immediate flurry of executive orders to reverse Trump policies," 7 Nov. 2020 Consider buying a cheap flip phone from a drug store with prepaid minutes. Amy Chillag, CNN, "12 steps to surviving an abusive partner during the pandemic," 28 Oct. 2020 Maybe your dad wants to ditch the flip phone, but avoid the extras that come with an iPhone. Ariel Wodarcyk, Popular Science, "The best Black Friday phone deals: The best early deals on iPhones, flip phones (yes, flip phones), and more," 14 Nov. 2020

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


1616, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1695, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1823, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for flip

Verb, Noun, and Adjective

probably imitative

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Learn More about flip

Statistics for flip

Last Updated

12 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Flip.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/flip. Accessed 16 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for flip


How to pronounce flip (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of flip

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to turn (something) over by throwing it up in the air with a quick movement
: to cause (something) to turn or turn over quickly
: to move (something) with a quick light movement



English Language Learners Definition of flip (Entry 2 of 3)

: the act of flipping something : a quick turn, toss, or movement
: an athletic movement in which someone jumps in the air and rolls forward or backward : a somersault in the air

English Language Learners Definition of flip (Entry 3 of 3)

informal : not serious


\ ˈflip How to pronounce flip (audio) \
flipped; flipping

Kids Definition of flip

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to move or turn by or as if by tossing flip a coin flip a switch



Kids Definition of flip (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a quick turn, toss, or movement the flip of a coin
2 : a somersault in the air

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