flirt

verb
\ 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

flirt

noun

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

Verb

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

Synonyms for flirt

Synonyms: Verb

coquet (or coquette), dally, frivol, mess around, toy, trifle

Synonyms: Noun

flirter, wanton

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Choose the Right Synonym for flirt

Verb

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
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Some illustrated stories are written specifically for children who are just learning to read or who are flirting with fluency. Meghan Cox Gurdon, WSJ, "Children’s Books: Taking to the Sky," 25 Jan. 2019 After breaking with 20th Century-Fox and flirting with an early retirement, she was wooed back to work by producer David O. Selznick. Marley Marius, Vogue, "How Is the New A Star Is Born Different Than Its Predecessors? We’re So Glad You Asked," 3 Oct. 2018 Visionhaus—Corbis via Getty Images Others have skirted regulations by dying their hair bright colors and flirting with different forms of undergarments, accessories or trim. Raisa Bruner, Time, "Why Wimbledon Players Have to Wear All White," 2 July 2018 While Circle Centre has struggled to retain retailers — many of which have had parent companies going through, or flirting with, bankruptcy — the mall has had success bringing in new dining and entertainment concepts. James Briggs, Indianapolis Star, "Circle Centre mall to get 'multimillion-dollar renovation'," 19 Feb. 2018 Which brings us back to this year's draft and the danger the Heat flirted with during much of this season, namely the first of the two first-round picks due to the Suns from the Dragic trade. Ira Winderman, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Winderman: Heat survive Part I of Dragic payment plan | Commentary," 14 Apr. 2018 In turn, yields on two-year Treasurys—which are often sensitive to interest-rate expectations—have flirted with 10-year highs. Akane Otani, WSJ, "Treasury Yields Rise to Multiyear Highs After Strong Data," 3 Oct. 2018 These are classic styles that have just enough flirt to them. Kerry Pieri, Harper's BAZAAR, "Staud Launches Shoes and We're in Love," 27 Feb. 2019 The show flirts with being outright pulpy trash, then bounces gleefully between genres, underlining the many ways those genres prop up systems that prioritize the feelings and accomplishments of toxic men. Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "You, now streaming on Netflix, tilts the rom-com into postmodern horror," 27 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

With its relaxed bearing and easy tunefulness, Mr. Tyler’s album flirts with music that is devoid of tension and too pretty—in the 1980s, a less discerning record clerk might have filed this one in the New Age section. Mark Richardson, WSJ, "‘Goes West’ by William Tyler Review: Music History in Modern Melody," 23 Jan. 2019 Many in Italy, where Fiat and the Agnelli family are loathed and loved, interpreted the GM flirt as a first step to the family abandoning FCA. Eric Sylvers, WSJ, "Sergio Marchionne’s Death Thrusts Agnelli Heir Into Spotlight," 25 July 2018 As the light fades, the ambient temperature flirts with freezing. Daniel Otis, Sunset, "Awe-Inspiring Canadian Rockies Camping Adventure," 22 Jan. 2018 Personals, while ostensibly functioning as a way to meet future partners, also works as a support network where people show up simply to encourage people's posts and trade flirts. Angela Watercutter, WIRED, "Could a Text-Based Dating App Change Selfie-Swiping Culture?," 10 July 2018 In one scene, Diego courts Luciana (Lola Dueñas), a flirt in a preposterous wig worthy of Marie Antoinette. Manohla Dargis, New York Times, "Review: In ‘Zama,’ Trying to Say Goodbye (Cruel) New World," 12 Apr. 2018 Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas' Instagram flirt-fest continues. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Priyanka Chopra Can't Stop Leaving Flirty Comments on Nick Jonas' Instagram and We Are Here For It," 7 June 2018 From beloved internet celebs (like Chrissy Tiegen, coming in at 19) and bears (in both 20th and 8th place), there are plenty of options for getting your flirt on. Marshall Bright, refinery29.com, "The 20 GIFs Most Likely To Get You A Response On Tinder," 15 Mar. 2018 Since 2009, New York City’s annual bus ridership has plunged by almost 11 percent, even as the city’s population booms and its overcrowded subway flirts with collapse. Aarian Marshall, WIRED, "NYC Is Redesigning Its Ancient, Ponderous, and Unpopular Bus System," 24 Apr. 2018

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

Verb

1580, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Noun

circa 1590, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for flirt

Verb and Noun

origin unknown

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Learn More about flirt

Dictionary Entries near flirt

flip-up

FLIR

flird

flirt

flirtable

flirtatious

flirt-gill

Statistics for flirt

Last Updated

18 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for flirt

The first known use of flirt was in 1580

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More Definitions for flirt

flirt

verb

English Language Learners Definition of flirt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to behave in a way that shows a sexual attraction for someone but is not meant to be taken seriously
: to think about something or become involved in something in a way that is usually not very serious
: to come close to reaching or experiencing something

flirt

noun

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

: a person who enjoys flirting with other people : a flirtatious person

flirt

verb
\ 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

flirt

noun

Kids Definition of flirt (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person who flirts a lot

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More from Merriam-Webster on flirt

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for flirt

Spanish Central: Translation of flirt

Nglish: Translation of flirt for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of flirt for Arabic Speakers

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