flout

verb
\ ˈflau̇t How to pronounce flout (audio) \
flouted; flouting; flouts

Definition of flout

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to treat with contemptuous disregard : scorn flouting the rules

intransitive verb

: to indulge in scornful behavior Ah, you may flout and turn up your faces— Robert Browning

flout

noun

Definition of flout (Entry 2 of 2)

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Other Words from flout

Verb

flouter noun

Synonyms for flout

Synonyms: Verb

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Choose the Right Synonym for flout

Verb

scoff, jeer, gibe, fleer, sneer, flout mean to show one's contempt in derision or mockery. scoff stresses insolence, disrespect, or incredulity as motivating the derision. scoffed at their concerns jeer suggests a coarser more undiscriminating derision. the crowd jeered at the prisoners gibe implies taunting either good-naturedly or in sarcastic derision. hooted and gibed at the umpire fleer suggests grinning or grimacing derisively. the saucy jackanapes fleered at my credulity sneer stresses insulting by contemptuous facial expression, phrasing, or tone of voice. sneered at anything romantic flout stresses contempt shown by refusal to heed. flouted the conventions of polite society

Flaunt vs. Flout: Usage Guide

Verb

Although the "treat contemptuously" sense of flaunt undoubtedly arose from confusion with flout, the contexts in which it appears cannot be called substandard. meting out punishment to the occasional mavericks who operate rigged games, tolerate rowdyism, or otherwise flaunt the law — Oscar Lewis observed with horror the flaunting of their authority in the suburbs, where men … put up buildings that had no place at all in a Christian commonwealth — Marchette Chute in our profession … very rarely do we publicly chastise a colleague who has flaunted our most basic principles — R. T. Blackburn, AAUP Bull. If you use it, however, you should be aware that many people will consider it a mistake. Use of flout in the sense of "flaunt, parade" is found occasionally. "The proper pronunciation," the blonde said, flouting her refined upbringing, "is pree feeks" — Mike Royko

Did You Know?

Verb

Watch out when using "flaunt" and "flout." Critics have been complaining about the confusion of these two words since the early 1900s. Flaunt means "to display ostentatiously," and most usage commentators consider it an error to use "flaunt" with the meaning "to treat with contemptuous disregard" (even though some admit to doing it themselves). Many educated writers have used "flaunt" in the "flout" sense for years, but the notoriety of the controversy is so great, and the belief that it's wrong to use "flaunt" for "flout" is so deep-seated, that we think you would do best to keep the two words distinct.

Examples of flout in a Sentence

Verb Despite repeated warnings, they have continued to flout the law. an able-bodied motorist openly flouting the law and parking in a space reserved for the disabled
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Concept-heavy, nine-piece Brooklyn funk band Turkuaz is part of a new breed of jam-friendly acts that flout genre boundaries the way most of us do speed limits. John Wenzel, The Know, "The best New Year’s Eve 2019 live music to see in Denver and beyond," 19 Dec. 2019 Subsequent articles in Reveal’s series found that companies cited for shorting worker pay continue to flout the law – operating despite having failed to pay wage theft judgments, leaving scores of workers unpaid. Washington Post, "Probe: Medicaid funds still go to suspect senior care homes," 16 Dec. 2019 Others have been accused of flouting some of their most basic duties in the courtroom. Joseph Cranney, ProPublica, "These Judges Can Have Less Training Than Barbers but Still Decide Thousands of Cases Each Year," 27 Nov. 2019 In her lawsuit, Sandra Hagenbrock, a former national account director, claimed that company managers flouted internal policies prohibiting off-label marketing. Ed Silverman, STAT, "Another former Sun Pharma sales rep claims she was fired for complaining about off-label marketing," 7 Nov. 2019 But Netflix has gotten in the habit of flouting this rule, much to the dismay of theaters owners and the movie industry. Frank Pallotta, CNN, "'The Irishman' will skip a wide theatrical release and debut on Netflix November 27," 27 Aug. 2019 These Democrats worry that there's not enough evidence to suggest Trump tried to flout the Legislature's authority since ultimately these matters will be decided in the courts. Arkansas Online, "Trump faces 2 impeachment articles; charges allege abuse of power, obstruction," 11 Dec. 2019 These Democrats worry that there's not enough evidence to suggest Trump tried to flout the legislature's authority since ultimately these matters will be decided in the courts. John Wagner, Anchorage Daily News, "House Democrats unveil two articles of impeachment against Trump," 10 Dec. 2019 Many ride-hailing companies initially thrived by flouting regulations and allowing almost anyone with a car to become a driver without the screening and licenses required in the taxi industry. Kate Conger, New York Times, "Uber Says 3,045 Sexual Assaults Were Reported in U.S. Rides Last Year," 5 Dec. 2019

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

Verb

1551, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Noun

1566, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for flout

Verb and Noun

probably from Middle English flouten to play the flute, from floute flute

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Time Traveler for flout

Time Traveler

The first known use of flout was in 1551

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Statistics for flout

Last Updated

7 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Flout.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/flout. Accessed 20 January 2020.

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More Definitions for flout

flout

verb
How to pronounce flout (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of flout

: to break or ignore (a law, rule, etc.) without hiding what you are doing or showing fear or shame

flout

verb
\ ˈflau̇t How to pronounce flout (audio) \
flouted; flouting

Kids Definition of flout

: to ignore in an open and disrespectful way The children flouted the rules.

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More from Merriam-Webster on flout

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for flout

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with flout

Spanish Central: Translation of flout

Nglish: Translation of flout for Spanish Speakers

Comments on flout

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