[ flop ]
/ flɒp /
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See synonyms for: flop / flopped / flopping on Thesaurus.com

verb (used without object), flopped, flop·ping.
verb (used with object), flopped, flop·ping.
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Origin of flop

First recorded in 1595–1605; variant of flap;def. 11 was first recorded in 1890–95.


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


What does flop mean?

To flop is to plump down or fall suddenly, often making a noise, as in After the long hike, Sasha flopped on the grass to rest.

To flop can also mean to drop something with a sudden bump, as in Dola flopped her books to the floor to make room on the desk.

To flop also means to fail completely, as in The new play flopped because the actors didn’t know their lines and no one came after opening night.

Flop can be used as a noun to refer to any of these actions, as well.

Example: I flopped on the couch after a long day of work.

Where does flop come from?

The first records of the term flop come from around 1595. It is a variant of the word flap. It was first used to mean “a failure” around 1890.

Flop’s main sense relates to a sudden fall, but this can be used broadly. For example, the term flip-flop means “to change suddenly,” as well as a type of sandal that creates a flopping sound when you walk in them. Flop often describes someone laying down to rest or sleep, but it can also describe a fall that is somewhat humorous. As a failure, flop often describes a product or business that is not well received.

Did you know … ?

What are some other forms related to flop?

  • flopper (noun)
  • floppy (adjective)

What are some synonyms for flop?

What are some words that share a root or word element with flop?

What are some words that often get used in discussing flop?

How is flop used in real life?

Flop is frequently used to mean failure.



Try using flop!

Is flop used correctly in the following sentence?

“Oba was so excited that she flopped up from her chair and danced around.

How to use flop in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for flop

/ (flɒp) /

verb flops, flopping or flopped

Word Origin for flop

C17: variant of flap
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