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90s Slang You Should Know


[flip-uh nt] /ˈflɪp ənt/
frivolously disrespectful, shallow, or lacking in seriousness; characterized by levity:
The audience was shocked by his flippant remarks about patriotism.
Chiefly Dialect. nimble, limber, or pliant.
Archaic. glib; voluble.
Origin of flippant
1595-1605; apparently flip1 + -ant
Related forms
flippancy, flippantness, noun
flippantly, adverb
unflippant, adjective
unflippantly, adverb
1. saucy, impertinent, impudent. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for flippant
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The taint of a flippant wit was common to all its members, and their assurance was unbounded.

    The Beth Book Sarah Grand
  • She looked at him sternly as she spoke, as though defying him to be flippant in return.

    Robert Elsmere Mrs. Humphry Ward
  • You know how flippant, how 'fly-away,' he can be when the mood seizes him, how wholeheartedly he can play the fool.

    Grey Roses Henry Harland
  • Hurry and agitation were making her flippant, and Robert was nearer than she deemed.

    Hopes and Fears Charlotte M. Yonge
  • "Please do not be flippant," said the voice from the rocking-chair, sadly.

    Toppleton's Client John Kendrick Bangs
  • Kathryn's voice betrayed her dislike of the flippant answer.

    The Brentons Anna Chapin Ray
  • Sara is flippant when things are going along all right, but she knows when to buckle down and do what she's asked.

    Sense from Thought Divide Mark Irvin Clifton
British Dictionary definitions for flippant


marked by inappropriate levity; frivolous or offhand
impertinent; saucy
(obsolete) talkative or nimble
Derived Forms
flippancy, noun
flippantly, adverb
Word Origin
C17: perhaps from flip
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for flippant

c.1600, "talkative;" 1670s, "displaying unbecoming levity," apparently an extended form of flip (v.). Shortened form flip is attested from 1847. Related: Flippantly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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