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flay

[fley] /fleɪ/
verb (used with object)
1.
to strip off the skin or outer covering of.
2.
to criticize or scold with scathing severity.
3.
to deprive or strip of money or property.
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English flen, Old English flēan; cognate with Middle Dutch vlaen, Old Norse flā
Related forms
flayer, noun
unflayed, adjective
Synonyms
2. castigate, excoriate, upbraid, chew out.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for flay
  • flay is a longtime racehorse owner and fan of the sport.
  • flay notes that his version omits the traditional pork.
  • With a snarl of rage he turned and his long arms began to flay the air.
British Dictionary definitions for flay

flay

/fleɪ/
verb (transitive)
1.
to strip off the skin or outer covering of, esp by whipping; skin
2.
to attack with savage criticism
3.
to strip of money or goods, esp by cheating or extortion
Derived Forms
flayer, noun
Word Origin
Old English flēan; related to Old Norse flā to peel, Lithuanian plešti to tear

fley

/fleɪ/
verb (Scot & Northern English, dialect)
1.
to be afraid or cause to be afraid
2.
(transitive) to frighten away; scare
Word Origin
Old English āflēgan to put to flight; related to Old Norse fleygja
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for flay
v.

Old English flean "to skin" (strong verb, past tense flog, past participle flagen), from Proto-Germanic *flakhanan (cf. Middle Dutch vlaen, Old High German flahan, Old Norse fla), from PIE root *plak- (2) "to hit" (cf. Greek plessein "to strike," Lithuanian plešiu "to tear;" see plague (n.)). Related: Flayed; flaying.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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