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See also: Fling



From Old Norse flengja.



fling (plural flings)

  1. An act of throwing, often violently.
  2. An act of moving the limbs or body with violent movements, especially in a dance.
    the fling of a horse
  3. An act or period of unrestrained indulgence.
    • D. Jerrold
      When I was as young as you, I had my fling. I led a life of pleasure.
  4. A short, often sexual, relationship.
    I had a fling with a girl I met on holiday.
  5. (figuratively) An attempt, a try (as in "give it a fling").
  6. (obsolete) A severe or contemptuous remark; an expression of sarcastic scorn; a gibe; a sarcasm.
    • Jonathan Swift
      I, who love to have a fling, / Both at senate house and king.
  7. A kind of dance.
    the Highland fling
  8. (obsolete) A trifing matter; an object of contempt.
    • Old proverb
      England were but a fling / Save for the crooked stick and the grey goose wing.




fling (third-person singular simple present flings, present participle flinging, simple past and past participle flung)

  1. (transitive) To throw with violence or quick movement; to hurl.
    • Dryden
      'Tis Fate that flings the dice: and, as she flings, / Of kings makes peasants, and of peasants kings.
    • Addison
      I know thy generous temper well. / Fling but the appearance of dishonour on it, / It straight takes fire.
    • 2011, Tom Fordyce, Rugby World Cup 2011: England 12-19 France[1]:
      Wilkinson was struggling, sending the re-start straight into touch and flinging a pass the same way, and France then went close to the first try of the contest as Clerc took a long pass out on the left and was just bundled into touch by the corner flag.
  2. (intransitive, archaic) To throw oneself in a violent or hasty manner; to rush or spring with violence or haste.
    • Milton
      And crop-full, out of doors he flings.
    • Elizabeth Browning
      I flung closer to his breast, / As sword that, after battle, flings to sheath.
  3. (intransitive, archaic) To throw; to wince; to flounce.
    • Helen Crocket, The Ettrick Shepherd's Last Tale
      The horse flung most potently, making his heels fly aloft in the air.
  4. (intransitive, archaic) To utter abusive language; to sneer.
    The scold began to flout and fling.