[ fley ]
See synonyms for: flayflayed on Thesaurus.com

verb (used with object)
  1. to strip off the skin or outer covering of.

  2. to criticize or scold with scathing severity.

  1. to deprive or strip of money or property.

Origin of flay

before 900; Middle English flen,Old English flēan; cognate with Middle Dutch vlaen,Old Norse flā

Other words for flay

Other words from flay

  • flayer, noun
  • un·flayed, adjective

Words Nearby flay

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use flay in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for flay


/ (fleɪ) /

  1. to strip off the skin or outer covering of, esp by whipping; skin

  2. to attack with savage criticism

  1. to strip of money or goods, esp by cheating or extortion

Origin of flay

Old English flēan; related to Old Norse flā to peel, Lithuanian pl e šti to tear

Derived forms of flay

  • flayer, noun

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