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flirt +‎ -ation


  • IPA(key): /flɚˈteɪʃən/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -eɪʃən


flirtation (countable and uncountable, plural flirtations)

  1. Playing at courtship; coquetry.
    • 1907, Harold Bindloss, chapter 4, in The Dust of Conflict[1]:
      The inquest on keeper Davidson was duly held, and at the commencement seemed likely to cause Tony Palliser less anxiety than he had expected. Northrop knew all about Tony's flirtation with Lucy Davidson, but it also knew a good deal more about that lady than Tony did, and exculpated him.
  2. An instance of flirting.
    • 1837, L[etitia] E[lizabeth] L[andon], Ethel Churchill: Or, The Two Brides. [], volume II, London: Henry Colburn, [], →OCLC, pages 70–71:
      Courtenaye augured well from the profound silence; suddenly a burst of applause shook the house, the curtain had fallen, and Booth sprang to Walter's side, who was still engaged in an animated flirtation with an actress who was to play in the afterpiece.
  3. A period of experimentation with or interest in a particular idea or activity.
    • 2023 March 8, Howard Johnston, “Was Marples the real railway wrecker?”, in RAIL, number 978, page 52:
      The elimination of vacuum-braked wagons would be slowed down, and the Western Region's flirtation with diesel-hydraulic locomotives was questioned.

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