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From Middle English flaunneol, from Anglo-Norman flanelle (compare Norman flianné), diminutive of Old French flaine, floene(coarse wool), from Gaulish, from Proto-Celtic *wlānos, *wlanā(wool) (compare Welsh gwlân, Breton gloan), from Proto-Indo-European *h₂wĺ̥h₁neh₂. More at wool.



flannel (countable and uncountable, plural flannels)

  1. (uncountable) A soft cloth material woven from wool, possibly combined with cotton or synthetic fibers.
    With the weather turning colder, it was time to dig out our flannel sheets and nightclothes.
    • 2012, Tom Lamont, How Mumford & Sons became the biggest band in the world (in The Daily Telegraph, 15 November 2012)[1]
      First singer and guitarist Marcus Mumford, wearing a black suit, then bassist Ted Dwane, in leather bomber and T-shirt. Next bearded banjo player Winston Marshall, his blue flannel shirt hanging loose, and pianist Ben Lovett, wrapped in a woollen coat.
  2. (New Zealand, Britain) A washcloth.
  3. (slang) Soothing plausible untruth and half truth, claptrap - "Don't talk flannel" [2][3][4]

Derived terms[edit]



flannel (not comparable)

  1. made of flannel



flannel (third-person singular simple present flannels, present participle flanneling or flannelling, simple past and past participle flanneled or flannelled)

  1. (transitive) To rub with a flannel.
  2. (transitive) To flatter; to suck up to.