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[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 flippantly
Historical Examples
  • "Fool if she doesn't," replied this elegant young gentleman, flippantly.

    Australia Revenged Boomerang
  • "I hope none of God's bears is roaming about," replied Alice, flippantly.

    They of the High Trails

    Hamlin Garland
  • “Oh, only made some funny noises,” retorted Miss Jones, flippantly.

  • In reference to this it is flippantly asked, 'What does the house build?'

    The Verbalist Thomas Embly Osmun, (AKA Alfred Ayres)
  • Not flippantly, but reverently, leave your misdeeds in a limbo where they may not rise to haunt you.

    The Untroubled Mind Herbert J. Hall
  • "Call out the fire department, probably," said Eleanor flippantly.

    Quin Alice Hegan Rice
  • "I am sorry to hear you speak so flippantly on a solemn subject," said Milburgh.

    The Daffodil Mystery

    Edgar Wallace
  • "Much obliged for the information," declared Kathleen flippantly.

  • "I knew you were talking about me," declared Kathleen flippantly.

  • “On the psychology of Dr. Hinsdale you mean,” amended Madeline flippantly.

    Betty Wales Senior Margaret Warde
British Dictionary definitions for flippantly


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 flippantly



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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