flim-flam

Definitions

Slang

  • noun (to attempt) trickery or deceit, specifically a confidence trick involving a tall story. The word, which is in use in Britain, but more widespread in the USA, probably comes, via Scottish dialect, from an old Scandinavian word flim meaning mockery. The added second syllable is an example of a common linguistic change in comical words (such as knick-knack, etc.) known as ‘reduplication’.
  • verb (to attempt) trickery or deceit, specifically a confidence trick involving a tall story. The word, which is in use in Britain, but more widespread in the USA, probably comes, via Scottish dialect, from an old Scandinavian word flim meaning mockery. The added second syllable is an example of a common linguistic change in comical words (such as knick-knack, etc.) known as ‘reduplication’.
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