Definition of Fleming in English:



  • 1A native of Flanders.

    • ‘In the years after the conquest, Normans, Flemings, Bretons, and other Frenchmen also took key posts as bishops and abbots in a Church which underwent major reform in the years after 1070.’
    • ‘Finally, he established eighteen burghs, mainly in the south-east, mainly associated with royal fortresses, and mainly peopled by foreigners: English or Flemings.’
    • ‘His mission was to resurrect the folklore of medieval Flanders, of its freemen, its prosperous cities, and its Burgundian history, and in 1856 he published the Popular Songs of French Flemings.’
    • ‘In 1303 and 1497 similar agreements were made between England and the French and England and the Flemings.’
    • ‘In 1380 he helped to quell a revolt by the Flemish burghers against the count, which ended in 1382 with the massacre of 26,000 Flemings.’
  • 2A member of the Flemish-speaking people inhabiting northern and western Belgium.

    Compare with walloon
    • ‘The languages of both the Flemings and the Walloons have formal and informal modes of addressing another person.’
    • ‘The cultural, linguistic, and political divisions between the Walloons and the Flemings are a continuing source of conflict.’
    • ‘Both the Flemings and Walloons revolted against Dutch rule, and the new Kingdom of Belgium was established in 1830 as a constitutional monarchy.’
    • ‘Most readers were probably hazy about Flemish and the Flemings, and French is the language of the trading company that Marlow has joined.’
    • ‘Dutch was to survive there as a conglomeration of deviant dialects spoken by a chiefly rural people, the Flemings, while the affairs of state were conducted solely in French.’


Late Old English Flæmingi, from Old Norse, reinforced by Middle Dutch Vlāming, related to Vlaanderen Flanders.