1. a trick or deception, especially a swindle or confidence game involving skillful persuasion or clever manipulation of the victim.
  2. a piece of nonsense; twaddle; bosh.
verb (used with object), flim·flammed, flim·flam·ming.
  1. to trick, deceive, swindle, or cheat: A fortuneteller flimflammed her out of her savings.

Origin of flimflam

First recorded in 1530–40; gradational compound of expressive orig.
Related formsflim·flam·mer, nounflim·flam·mer·y, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for flimflammery


    1. nonsense; foolishness
    2. (as modifier)flimflam arguments
  1. a deception; swindle
verb -flams, -flamming or -flammed
  1. (tr) to deceive; trick; swindle; cheat
Derived Formsflimflammer, noun

Word Origin for flimflam

C16: probably of Scandinavian origin; compare Old Norse flīm mockery, Norwegian flire to giggle
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