or flun·key


noun, plural flun·kies.

a male servant in livery.
an assistant who does menial work.
a toady; yes-man.

Origin of flunky

First recorded in 1775–85; perhaps alteration of flanker
Related formsflun·ky·ism, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for flunky

gofer, lackey, servant, drudge, steward, sycophant, snob, toady, footman

Examples from the Web for flunky

Historical Examples of flunky

  • "You can wait in there; I'll see if Miss Stanton is in," said the flunky, as he turned on his heel.

    The Music Master

    Charles Klein

  • "Yes, sir," replied the flunky, moving toward the sideboard.


    F. Hopkinson Smith

  • "I'll go and ask if she'll see you," said the flunky unwillingly.

  • He did protest then that any flunky on the Base could read it to the crowd as well as he.

    Human Error

    Raymond F. Jones

  • His is the only house upon this island; also, I am his flunky and so I ought to know.

    Pastoral Affair

    Charles A. Stearns

British Dictionary definitions for flunky



noun plural flunkies or flunkeys

a servile or fawning person
a person who performs menial tasks
usually derogatory a manservant in livery

Word Origin for flunky

C18: of unknown origin
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 flunky

also flunkey, 1782, Scottish dialect, "footman, liveried servant," of uncertain origin, perhaps a diminutive variant of flanker. Sense of "flatterer, toady" first recorded 1855.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper