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June 4, 2020

Word of the Day: Flagrant

1 CQ

Word of the Day : August 23, 2017

flagrant \FLAY-grunt\ adjective


: conspicuously offensive; especially : so obviously inconsistent with what is right or proper as to appear to be a flouting of law or morality


In a flagrant violation of the family's code of ethics, someone had finished the ice cream and left the empty container in the freezer.

"The history of acting, in [Dan] Fox's account, is one of constant flux between naturalism and styles of flagrant artifice, but both are modes of pretending." — Christian Lorentzen, The New York Magazine, 4 Apr. 2016

Did You Know?

In Latin, flagrare means "to burn," and flagrans means "burning" or "fiery hot" (both literally and figuratively). When it was first used in the 16th century, flagrant had the same meaning as flagrans, but by the 18th century it had acquired its current meaning of "conspicuously bad." Some usage commentators warn against using flagrant and blatant interchangeably. While both words denote conspicuousness, they are not exact synonyms. Blatant is usually used of some person, action, or thing that attracts disapproving attention (e.g., "a blatant grammatical error"). Flagrant is used similarly, but usually carries a heavier weight of violated morality (e.g., "flagrant abuse of public office").

Aired August 23, 2017

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