flamingo

Definitions

General English

Cricket

  • noun an unorthodox batting stroke in which the batsman balances on one leg, usually flicking the ball towards the on-side; the flamingo is one of Kevin Pietersen’s trademark shots

Origin & History of “flamingo”

Flamingos get their name from their reddish-pink plumage, which earned them the epithet ‘fire-bird’. this was expressed in Provençal (the language of southern French coastal areas, where flamingos abound) as flamenc, a compound formed from flama ‘flame’ (a descendant of Latin flamma) and the Germanic suffix -ing ‘belonging to’. English acquired the word via Portuguese flamengo. (It has, incidentally, no etymological connection with flamenco ‘Spanish dance’ (19th c.), which comes from the Spanish word for ‘Flemish’: the people of Flanders seem to have had a reputation in the middle Ages for bright, flamboyant dress, and hence ‘Flemish’ in Spanish became synonymous with ‘gipsy-like’.).
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