flatter

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English[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

flat +‎ -er

Noun[edit]

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flatter (plural flatters)

  1. A type of set tool used by blacksmiths.
  2. A flat-faced fulling hammer.
  3. A drawplate with a narrow, rectangular orifice, for drawing flat strips such as watch springs.
  4. Someone who flattens, purposely or accidently. Also flattener.
  5. (Britain, New Zealand, slang) Someone who lives in a rented flat.
Translations[edit]

Adjective[edit]

flatter

  1. comparative form of flat: more flat

Etymology 2[edit]

Verb[edit]

flatter (third-person singular simple present flatters, present participle flattering, simple past and past participle flattered) (transitive, intransitive)

  1. To compliment someone, often insincerely and sometimes to win favour.
    • 1611, King James Version of the Bible, Proverbs 29:5,[1]
      A man that flattereth his neighbour spreadeth a net for his feet.
    • 1855, William H. Prescott, History of the Reign of Philip the Second, King of Spain, Boston: Phillips, Sampson & Co., Volume 1, Book 1, Chapter 7, p. 242,[2]
      Some he complimented for their bravery; others he flattered by asking their advice.
  2. To enhance someone's vanity by praising them.
  3. To portray someone to advantage.
    Her portrait flatters her.
    • c. 1594, William Shakespeare, The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Act IV, Scene 4,[3]
      Here is her picture: let me see; I think,
      If I had such a tire, this face of mine
      Were full as lovely as is this of hers:
      And yet the painter flatter’d her a little []
  4. To encourage or cheer someone with (usually false) hope.
    • 1593, William Shakespeare, Venus and Adonis,[4]
      The dire imagination she did follow
      This sound of hope doth labour to expel;
      For now reviving joy bids her rejoice,
      And flatters her it is Adonis’ voice.
    • 1743, Robert Drury, The Pleasant, and Surprizing Adventures of Mr. Robert Drury, during his Fifteen Years Captivity on the Island of Madagascar, London, p. 9,[5]
      [] I went up, and sat there two Hours and an half before I cou’d discern any Thing like Land; and when I first saw it I told my Comrade, but not being certain I wou’d not call out; for the Case was of such Importance, that they were not to be trifled with, or flatter’d into vain Hopes.
Related terms[edit]
Translations[edit]
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle French flatter (to flatter, to caress with the flat of the hand), from Old French flater (to deceive by concealing the truth, to stroke with the palm of the hand), from Frankish *flat (palm, flat of the hand), from Proto-Germanic *flatą, *flatō (palm, sole), *flataz (flat), from Proto-Indo-European *plÁt-, *pele-, *plet-, *plāk- (flat, broad, plain). Cognate with Old High German flazza (palm, flat of the hand), Old High German flaz (level, flat), Old Saxon flat (flat), Old Norse flatr (flat) (whence English flat), Old Frisian flet, flette (dwelling, house), Old English flet, flett (ground floor, dwelling). More at flat, flétrir.

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

flatter

  1. to flatter

Conjugation[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Further reading[edit]


German[edit]

Verb[edit]

flatter

  1. First-person singular present of flattern.
  2. Imperative singular of flattern.

Middle French[edit]

Verb[edit]

flatter

  1. to flatter

Conjugation[edit]

  • Middle French conjugation varies from one text to another. Hence, the following conjugation should be considered as typical, not as exhaustive.