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

verb (used with object), flopped, flop·ping.


Origin of flop

1595–1605; 1890–95 for def 11; variant of flap
Related formsflop·per, noun

Synonyms for flop

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for flop

Contemporary Examples of flop

Historical Examples of flop

  • It was because as a manager of his financial affairs Dorothy was a flop.

  • She looks at it once, and begins to flop her arms and take on again.

    Shorty McCabe

    Sewell Ford

  • But somehow, Mrs. Bob continued to flop the broken wing, and to elude them.

    Plantation Sketches

    Margaret Devereux

  • At this he spread out his arms and dropped them with a flop upon his knees.

    Little Novels of Italy

    Maurice Henry Hewlett

  • Sim could not swim, and he began to flop about in the wildest and most unreasonable manner.

    Down The River

    Oliver Optic

British Dictionary definitions for flop


verb flops, flopping or flopped

(intr) to bend, fall, or collapse loosely or carelesslyhis head flopped backwards
(when intr, often foll by into, onto, etc) to fall, cause to fall, or move with a sudden noisethe books flopped onto the floor
(intr) informal to fail; be unsuccessfulthe scheme flopped
(intr) to fall flat onto the surface of water, hitting it with the front of the body
(intr often foll by out) slang to go to sleep


the act of flopping
informal a complete failure
US and Canadian slang a place to sleep
athletics See Fosbury flop
the flop poker the first three community cards dealt face-up in a round of any of several varieties of poker, including Texas hold 'em

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

Word Origin and History for flop

c.1600, probably a variant of flap with a duller, heavier sound. Sense of "fall or drop heavily" is 1836, that of "collapse, fail" is 1919; though the figurative noun sense of "a failure" is recorded from 1893. Related: Flopped; flopping.


1823, in the literal sense, from flop (v.). Figurative use by 1893.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper