Definition of flop in US English:

flop

verbflops, flopping, flopped

  • 1with adverbial Fall, move, or hang in a heavy, loose, and ungainly way.

    ‘black hair flopped across his forehead’
    • ‘He had beautiful wavy brown hair that flopped onto his forehead.’
    • ‘His black hair is flopping into his eyes and I can see an earring in his ear.’
    • ‘His dark brown, nearly black hair flopped over one eyebrow as he smiled crookedly, a smile girls back in Sanorn had once loved.’
    • ‘I walk in, socks sopping, hair flopping, dignity all over the place, and explain my dilemma.’
    • ‘She looked understandably anxious, her pale face whiter than her greying hair which flopped towards her eyes.’
    • ‘His hair flops, his suit sparkles, his shirt glitters.’
    • ‘His hair flops into his eyes as he runs, muscle and skin moving effortlessly.’
    • ‘The bandage she had wrapped around her side had come loose and was now flopping wildly below her.’
    • ‘He looked good anyway, with his wet blond hair flopped in his face, just brushing the top of his eyes.’
    • ‘Dark hair flopped messily over his forehead, and he had to keep pushing it out of his light brown eyes.’
    • ‘Brellier's chin drops to his chest, his long hair flopping over his features, hiding an apparent embarrassment at the question.’
    • ‘He re-tied his dreads in a loose ponytail, which flopped over his left shoulder.’
    • ‘To my surprise it's a young boy with a freckled, eager face and brown hair styled to flop over one eye, wearing black, carrying a rucksack and a bag.’
    • ‘Viv tied it around her wrist so that it flopped around whenever she moved her arm.’
    • ‘His golden hair flopped onto his forehead and stuck to it, soaking wet.’
    • ‘I looked up to see Brody onstage, his dishevelled dark brown hair flopping across his forehead and both hands hanging onto the microphone.’
    • ‘He was wearing his usual black framed glasses, with his hair flopping down to his face.’
    • ‘He was tall and had brown hair so dark it was almost black, which flopped over his green eyes.’
    • ‘The arms of the octopuses were still squirming and moving and flopping in every direction.’
    • ‘Some of his dark hair flopped onto his forehead and I almost reached out to tuck it back into place.’
    hang, hang down, drop, hang limply, hang loosely, dangle, droop, sag, flap, loll
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    1. 1.1 Sit or lie down heavily or suddenly in a specified place, especially when very tired.
      ‘Liz flopped down into the armchair’
      • ‘Suddenly exhausted, she flopped down on one of the many chairs that were scattered about Allyson's room.’
      • ‘That concluded the nights broadcast and Danni exhaled heavily, flopping back onto the bed.’
      • ‘Soon, Dai got tired and flopped down, leaning against the counter.’
      • ‘Charlie sighed heavily and flopped down on his bed.’
      • ‘He grinned mindlessly at his stupid analogy, moving to go and flop on the couch again, though this time with energy and not-so-much black.’
      • ‘Sighing heavily, he flopped onto his bed and reached for the glove.’
      • ‘Scarlett sighed heavily and flopped down onto a clear area on Jed's bed.’
      • ‘I flopped down onto my sleep sack, which was already damp from soaking up moisture from the soil.’
      • ‘At last we grew tired and flopped down in the cool grass to watch the clouds.’
      • ‘Leeann squealed, suddenly flopping into a seat next to them.’
      • ‘She flopped back down, tired in a way she hadn't been in a long time.’
      • ‘There was some brief talk of adjourning to the bar, but we were too tired, and so flopped under the tightly-tucked blankets and sheets instead.’
      • ‘And as though summoned by my thought, he flops down into the seat on my left.’
      • ‘The man fell over backwards flopping to the deck in unconsciousness.’
      • ‘Element moved past her and flopped down on his bed, putting his hands behind his head for relaxation.’
      • ‘Then, with chilled air pouring in down the back of my neck, you flop into your seat, oblivious.’
      • ‘Katerina laughed at her, trying to break her fall, before flopping down on top of her.’
      • ‘As he neared the boulders, Joe suddenly flopped to the ground.’
      • ‘When I flopped into my seat and pulled the door shut I was sobbing from the ordeal, out of breath, very cold, and wet right through.’
      • ‘I flopped into a reclining seat and realized suddenly that I was sitting right next to Anthony.’
      collapse, slump, crumple, subside, sink, drop, fall, tumble
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    2. 1.2informal Rest or sleep in a specified place.
      ‘I'm going to flop here for the night’
      • ‘Of course, we all had far too much to eat, and ended up flopped on the settee feeling full but satisfied for the rest of the night.’
      • ‘He flopped underneath a clump of trees and slept exhausted.’
      • ‘When we got home I found myself to be unaccountably tired, so I flopped for a while.’
      • ‘It's far too hot - I'd rather be flopping in the park.’
      • ‘By the time we'd finished we pretty much all felt we'd had enough to last a month and ended up flopped in the lounge watching the Dating Channel on Sky.’
    3. 1.3Basketball informal Deliberately fall or stumble in order to give the appearance of being fouled by an opponent.
      ‘nearly everyone watching the game in Chicago believed James flopped’
      • ‘Golden State's Thompson stoked the tensions before the series when he accused the Clippers' player of flopping.’
      • ‘Flopping rules are different in the postseason because players aren't warned.’
      • ‘Why does a team with that much talent feel the need to flop every other play?’
      • ‘But you do flop every two plays and you mostly have no reason to argue since most calls go your way, no?’
      • ‘Players know flopping works to their advantage so they do it.’
      • ‘Besides flopping, hustling, and playing good defense, he is also a 3-point specialist.’
      • ‘The problem is they spent too much time teaching him to flop in practice.’
      • ‘If he flops (by the league's standards) a second time he gets a $5,000 fine.’
      • ‘They're going to have to alternate who flops on which play.’
      • ‘Flopping had become a mysterious plague, forcing players' legs to buckle and their arms to flail in the air at the slightest hint of contact.’
  • 2informal (of a performer or show) be completely unsuccessful; fail totally.

    ‘prime-time dramas that flopped in the US market’
    • ‘He was sacked from his radio show and his concerts flopped.’
    • ‘It is an idea that could flop, and simply move the drop-out bulge from freshman to junior year.’
    • ‘Her career suffered a decline in the 1990s as a number of collaborative projects failed to take off and several films flopped.’
    • ‘In the past, the show became known for clashes between the DJs and for the crowd bottling performers who flopped.’
    • ‘Then it flopped, failing to capture that notorious off-screen chemistry, as did all her follow up films.’
    • ‘The great crime-busting experiment did not merely fail, it flopped spectacularly.’
    • ‘On the pitch he had problems leaving Villa, at Manchester United he flopped with some poor performances.’
    • ‘He could flop, of course, or fail to deliver on his expansive ambitions.’
    • ‘Their portfolios and performance will suffer mightily if this issue is allowed to flop.’
    • ‘All investors should realise that the majority of shares sold at initial public offerings flop and fail to recover the price that they were sold at.’
    • ‘The crowds failed to materialise and both show and print flopped.’
    • ‘However, Virgin's flotation flopped and Cruickshank moved into the public sector.’
    • ‘They have flopped in the majors and their performance in Atlanta was particularly embarrassing.’
    • ‘Last year he flopped in the first round and failed to get beyond the second round in 1999 and 1998.’
    • ‘But a good many, if not most, of his shows flop, for reasons I can't comprehend, when I consider quality alone.’
    • ‘Too many brilliant stand up comics have flopped when they've gone big to the big screen.’
    • ‘The play flopped, but Peck's performance brought interest from Hollywood.’
    • ‘Renamed A Kingdom for a Cow, the show flopped and instantly disappeared.’
    • ‘If the replacement shows flop, the advertiser needs to be made whole.’
    • ‘I think he knew Dunaway was going to get most of the attention - and, if the show flopped, most of the blame.’
    be unsuccessful, fail, not work, fall flat, founder, misfire, backfire, be a disappointment, do badly, lose money, be a disaster, meet with disaster, come to grief, miss the mark, run aground
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nounPlural flops

  • 1A heavy, loose, and ungainly movement, or a sound made by it.

    ‘they hit the ground with a flop’
    • ‘They dropped a rope ladder that fell with a flop all the way to the ground.’
    • ‘If she kept him far enough away, she thought grimly, ignoring the flops of her stomach every time she heard a step, she had a slightly larger chance of surviving.’
    • ‘Suddenly, with a sickening slush and smell, the contents came free, sliding to the ground with a dull flop.’
  • 2informal A total failure.

    ‘the play had been a flop’
    • ‘However, it was a commercial flop - few people turned up because of poor publicity and freezing weather.’
    • ‘It pulls out all the stops to try to wipe her slate clean, to obliterate the flops and the failures of recent years.’
    • ‘But this turned out to be a flop in Italy and has fared little better elsewhere.’
    • ‘I mean, what if we all pick one that is a total flop?’
    • ‘It was fortunate for them that both shared a profound interest in Astronomy, or the project would have been a total flop.’
    • ‘That's an oversimplification, to be sure, but Dobbs' failure to meet audience expectations certainly contributed to the flop.’
    • ‘A plan to import bicycles from Azerbaijan was a total flop.’
    • ‘Sadly, the rest of this $115m flop is far less memorable.’
    • ‘And to the chagrin of Danish film boosters and patriots, they all turned out to be relative flops.’
    • ‘This is a technically accurate film that had some really bad, wooden acting and it was a box office flop.’
    • ‘You have some scenarios where it doesn't work out and then again, you have some players who stay in school for four years, come into the NBA and are a total flop.’
    • ‘This is not to say that he is a total flop.’
    • ‘It might be a total flop, or it would be more popular.’
    • ‘The meeting lasted for three weeks, almost bankrupted the French treasury and - guess what - was a total flop.’
    • ‘What could be worse than to have your name automatically associated with an epic flop, even if you weren't responsible for its failure?’
    • ‘She had boyfriends and lovers, but later admitted: ‘I've been a total flop with men.’’
    • ‘Not surprisingly it was a total flop, proof that critics and audiences had finally called time on the Broadway musical.’
    • ‘They don't want to have their photos in the paper in case it turns out to be a controversial flop.’
    • ‘As far as a show of bombastic masculine bravura was concerned, this was a total flop.’
    • ‘He, being weak, was a total flop at sports and athletics, so he was all the jocks' favorite victim.’
    failure, disaster, debacle, catastrophe, loser
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  • 3US informal A cheap place to sleep.

    • ‘At the flops, the bums all eat the same thing.’
    • ‘He hadn't been out of the flop in three weeks except to go to a corner store and buy food.’
    • ‘Do you have a flop for the night?’

Origin

Early 17th century: variant of flap.

Pronunciation

flop

/fläp//flɑp/