- to draw back or shrink, as from what is dangerous, difficult, or unpleasant.
- to shrink under pain; wince.
- Croquet. to let the foot slip from the ball in the act of croqueting.
- to draw back or withdraw from.
- an act of flinching.
Origin of flinch1
SynonymsSee more synonyms for flinch on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for flinched
The normally cool and calm director of the CIA, John Brennan, may have flinched Tuesday.Did the CIA Chief Just Dare Obama to Fire Him?
March 11, 2014
For 13 miserable years, Franklin Roosevelt flinched from firing an incompetent and obnoxious White House cook.‘I Like Being Able to Fire People’
January 10, 2012
The British electorate, as some of us feared, has flinched from making tough choices.Running From Hard Choices
May 7, 2010
But when it came time to explain where the money would come from—that $900 billion over 10 years—he flinched.A Man on His Way to Bitterness
September 9, 2009
They carried the Weapon27 which spared not, nor flinched from the battle.
They carried the Weapon which spared not, nor flinched from the battle.
He flinched a little, complaining that they were burning him.The Downfall
John flinched, and the muscles of his face twitched nervously again.
John flinched as at a cut across the face and then smiled a smile of relief.
- to draw back suddenly, as from pain, shock, etc; wincehe flinched as the cold water struck him
- (often foll by from) to avoid contact (with); shy awayhe never flinched from his duty
- the act or an instance of drawing back
- a card game in which players build sequences
- a variant of flense
Word Origin and History for flinched
1570s, from obsolete flecche "to bend, flinch," probably from Old French flenchir "to bend," probably from Frankish *hlankjan or some other Germanic source (cf. Middle High German linken, German lenken "to bend, turn, lead"), from PIE root *kleng- "to bend, turn" (see link (n.)). Related: Flinched; flinching. As a noun, from 1817.