\ ˈflərt How to pronounce flirt (audio) \
flirted; flirting; flirts

Definition of flirt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to move erratically : flit butterflies flirting among the flowers
2a : to behave amorously without serious intent He flirts with every attractive woman he meets.
b : to show superficial or casual interest or liking flirted with the idea also : experiment a novelist flirting with poetry
3 : to come close to reaching or experiencing something used with with flirting with disaster

transitive verb

1 : flick They flirt water at each other's faces.
2 : to move in a jerky manner a bird flirting its tail



Definition of flirt (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of flirting
2 : a person who flirts

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Other Words from flirt


flirtation \ ˌflər-​ˈtā-​shən How to pronounce flirt (audio) \ noun
flirter noun
flirty \ ˈflər-​tē How to pronounce flirt (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for flirt

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

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Choose the Right Synonym for flirt


trifle, toy, dally, flirt, coquet mean to deal with or act toward without serious purpose. trifle may imply playfulness, unconcern, indulgent contempt. to trifle with a lover's feelings toy implies acting without full attention or serious exertion of one's powers. a political novice toying with great issues dally suggests indulging in thoughts or plans merely as an amusement. dallying with the idea of building a boat someday flirt implies an interest or attention that soon passes to another object. flirted with one fashionable ism after another coquet implies attracting interest or admiration without serious intention. companies that coquet with environmentalism solely for public relations

Examples of flirt in a Sentence

Verb They were flirting all night. the servers at that restaurant flirt with all the customers Noun he's just a harmless flirt, so don't take him seriously
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The willingness to flirt with failure, with just enough fallibility and insecurity to make failure seem possible, remains central to Cruise’s appeal. K. Austin Collins, Rolling Stone, 12 May 2022 The images in Re-visions often flirt with the viewer. Jonathon Keats, Forbes, 30 Apr. 2022 All of which is to say this: Democrats often flirt with the liberal edge of their party but ultimately have always come home to a candidate who represents the most electable contestant. Philip Elliott, Time, 26 Apr. 2022 Melissa and Bobbi flirt openly with one another, but Nick and Frances begin a serious affair, which tests the bond between Frances and Bobbi, forcing Frances to re-examine her vulnerabilities. Carson Burton, Variety, 12 Apr. 2022 Producing wines that flirt between sweetness and liveliness, this vineyard yields some of the best Chenin Blanc of the appellation. Michelle Williams, Forbes, 13 Apr. 2022 Your husband wants to flirt and to be flirted with. Amy Dickinson, oregonlive, 3 Dec. 2021 Your husband wants to flirt and to be flirted with. Amy Dickinson, Detroit Free Press, 3 Dec. 2021 Trainer eventually exits the frame, and The Lost City shifts its focus to Loretta and Alan, who bicker and flirt their way through the jungle in search of help, and Fairfax’s mysterious treasure. David Sims, The Atlantic, 26 Mar. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun While this energy is sweet and romantic, as an air sign and an epic flirt, Libras can be a bit flaky. Sophie Saint Thomas, Allure, 25 Apr. 2022 The singer-songwriter Sydney Bennett, who performs as Syd, usually likes to play the flirt. Sheldon Pearce, The New Yorker, 14 Apr. 2022 The power struggles give way to further power struggles; the murders reverberate and force the players to adjust their strategies and flirt with the enemy. Chris Vognar, USA TODAY, 24 Apr. 2022 In psychology, attachment theory can be applied to friendships, romantic relationships, platonic relationships, and co-writing partnerships that begin as a ruse to flirt. Nikki Palumbo, The New Yorker, 5 Jan. 2022 Zoe told the publication that Noth would walk by her desk and flirt with her and leave messages on her work phone. Elizabeth Wagmeister, Variety, 16 Dec. 2021 Tamayo still isn’t convinced, and leaving to eavesdrop as Lisbon and The Professor talk, flirt, and get engaged doesn’t get him any closer to solving his problems. Tara Ariano, Vulture, 5 Dec. 2021 Vodka, espresso, nuts, citrus and fennel flirt in the glass to create a drink that’s familiar but newly enticing, like reconnecting with an old flame at your high school reunion. Bill Addison, Los Angeles Times, 7 Dec. 2021 In his earliest stories, he was portrayed as a shameless flirt, but still generally a stand-up guy. Gretchen Smail, Vulture, 5 Nov. 2021 See More

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


1580, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


circa 1590, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for flirt

Verb and Noun

origin unknown

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Last Updated

20 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Flirt.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for flirt


\ ˈflərt How to pronounce flirt (audio) \
flirted; flirting

Kids Definition of flirt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to show a romantic interest in someone just for fun



Kids Definition of flirt (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person who flirts a lot

More from Merriam-Webster on flirt

Nglish: Translation of flirt for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of flirt for Arabic Speakers


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