\ ˈfläp \
flopped; flopping

Definition of flop

 (Entry 1 of 4)

intransitive verb

1 : to swing or move loosely : flap
2 : to throw or move oneself in a heavy, clumsy, or relaxed manner flopped into the chair
3 : to change or turn suddenly
4 : to go to bed a place to flop at night
5 : to fail completely the play flopped

transitive verb

: to move or drop heavily or noisily : cause to flop flopped the bundles down



Definition of flop (Entry 2 of 4)

: right, squarely fell flop on my face


noun (1)

Definition of flop (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : an act or sound of flopping
2 : a complete failure the movie was a flop
3 slang : a place to sleep especially : flophouse
4 : dung cow flop also : a piece of dung


noun (2)
plural flops

Definition of flop (Entry 4 of 4)

: a unit of measure for calculating the speed of a computer equal to one floating-point operation per second Supplied by IBM, with a billion flops (floating point operations per second) and a capacity to expand to 60 billion flops with the addition of other processors and memory, it will be among the 10 most sophisticated computers in the world.— Eleanor Wilson usually used in combination gigaflopA GPU [=graphics processing unit] can deliver hundreds of billions of operations per second—some GPUs more than a teraflop, or a trillion operations per second—while requiring only slightly more electrical power and cooling than a CPU.— Andrea Di Blas et al.

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Other Words from flop


flopper noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for flop

Synonyms: Verb

flump, plank, plop, plump, plunk (or plonk)

Synonyms: Noun (1)

bomb, bummer, bust, catastrophe, clinker, clunker, debacle (also débâcle), disaster, dud, failure, fiasco, fizzle, frost, lemon, loser, miss, shipwreck, turkey, washout

Antonyms: Noun (1)

blockbuster, hit, smash, success, winner

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Examples of flop in a Sentence


He flopped down onto the bed. She flopped into the chair with a sigh. All of their attempts have flopped miserably. The curtains were flopping around in the breeze.

Noun (1)

The movie was a total flop. It fell to the ground with a flop.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The Portuguese flopped as a hard as anyone could in his situation, and only managed a total of 700 minutes for the Swans. SI.com, "Bayern Munich Set to Keep Renato Sanches at the Club Next Season Despite Loan Request From Benfica," 7 June 2018 In the months before that note, Notre Dame flip-flopped on how to handle contraceptive coverage in its health plans. Shari Rudavsky, Indianapolis Star, "Notre Dame students sue school, Trump administration over birth control co-pay policy," 27 June 2018 After the final buzzer, however, the Magic (24-54) and Mavericks (24-55) had flip-flopped in the standings. Josh Robbins, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Aaron Gordon scores 20 points as Magic beat Mavericks 105-100," 5 Apr. 2018 That consideration, of course, came amidst Microsoft's muddy and confused flip-flopping on used game rights and digital game ownership in general around the same time frame. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Report: Cheaper, disc-free Xbox One option coming next year," 16 Nov. 2018 Some big, big names end up surprisingly flopping, much to the annoyance of their club's fans as well as everyone who chucked them into their fantasy teams at high prices. SI.com, "Could've Done Better: Picking an Underperforming XI From the 2017/18 Premier League Season," 17 May 2018 Liverpool's star forward, Mohamed Salah, is getting suited and booted -- or, in his case, suited and flip-flopped -- ahead of English PFA Player of the Year awards on Sunday. CNN, "Mo Salah gets suited and booted ahead of PFA Player of the Year awards," 20 Apr. 2018 Could the Bruins really go 0-12, and could Chip Kelly actually flop? Jon Wilner Pac-12 Hotline, The Seattle Times, "Pac-12 Power Rankings Week 7: If only the Huskies had a better kicking option than a freshman walk-on," 15 Oct. 2018 Which was, in effect, officially ruling that Neymar had flopped. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "The Analytics of Neymar’s Flopping," 5 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In a manner of weeks, the Colts and Texans transformed from flops to juggernauts. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "The Two NFL Teams Nobody Wants to Play Are Playing Each Other," 5 Jan. 2019 Think: a little black nylon dress with an off-kilter bubble hem worn with white heeled flip flops. Monica Kim, Vogue, "We11Done Went From Seoul to Berlin—To Make the World’s Chicest Bus Stop," 12 Dec. 2018 The back of the car is always stocked with the essentials: a cooler for filling, spare flip flops, a beach towel studded with sand from the last trip. Candace Braun Davison, House Beautiful, "This Luxe Beach Tent Will Get You Through The Hottest Days Of Summer," 4 Aug. 2018 The video shows Walter flop onto his stomach at the pool's edge, reach into the water and lift the baby deer out, plopping it onto the pool deck. Lisa Gutierrez, kansascity, "Watch a Kansas farmer rescue a baby deer that fell into a swimming pool," 15 June 2018 The clinical trials needed to get FDA approval cost over a billion dollars, and the last 12 have all been devastating flops. Joshua Kendall, BostonGlobe.com, "Can this doctor figure out how to stop Alzheimer’s before it starts?," 11 June 2018 Sophie Bernstein had Rainbow flip-flops, Tiffany earrings, and superpowers. Jamie Lauren Keiles, Vox, "How the JAP became America’s most complex Jewish stereotype.," 5 Dec. 2018 Skip options like flip-flops, which Morrish-Smith notes don’t offer much traction and can become a tripping hazard. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "10 Important Safety Tips to Keep in Mind When You’re in a Crowd," 20 Sep. 2018 As the Times points out, products as far-ranging as tooth fillings, cereals, flip-flops, toilet paper, couch cushions, cosmetics, frozen oysters, headphones, kombucha, and even beloved chocolate have faced Prop 65 compliance. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, "After coffee brewhaha, CA fears cancer warnings have “gone seriously wrong”," 16 Aug. 2018

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


1602, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


1728, in the meaning defined above

Noun (1)

1823, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

1976, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for flop


alteration of flap entry 2

Noun (2)

floating-point operation

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Statistics for flop

Last Updated

23 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for flop

The first known use of flop was in 1602

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More Definitions for flop



English Language Learners Definition of flop

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to fall, lie, or sit down in a sudden, awkward, or relaxed way

: to fail completely

: to swing or move in a loose, awkward, or uncontrolled way



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

: a complete failure

: the sound made when someone or something suddenly falls, lies, or sits down


\ ˈfläp \
flopped; flopping

Kids Definition of flop

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to flap about A fish flopped all over the deck.
2 : to drop or fall limply He flopped into the chair.
3 : fail entry 1 sense 1 The movie flopped.



Kids Definition of flop (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or sound of flapping about or falling limply My backpack hit the ground with a flop.
2 : failure sense 1 The show was a flop.

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More from Merriam-Webster on flop

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with flop

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for flop

Spanish Central: Translation of flop

Nglish: Translation of flop for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of flop for Arabic Speakers

Comments on flop

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


to settle judicially or to act as judge

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