verb (used with object), flung, flinging.
to throw, cast, or hurl with force or violence: to fling a stone.
to move (oneself) violently with impatience, contempt, or the like: She flung herself angrily from the room.
to put suddenly or violently: to fling a suspect into jail.
to project or speak sharply, curtly, or forcefully: He flung his answer at the questioner.
to involve (oneself) vigorously in an undertaking.
to move, do, or say (something) quickly: to fling a greeting in passing.
to send suddenly and rapidly: to fling fresh troops into a battle.
to throw aside or off.
to throw to the ground, as in wrestling or horseback riding.
verb (used without object), flung, flinging.
to move with haste or violence; rush; dash.
to fly into violent and irregular motions, as a horse; throw the body about, as a person.
to speak harshly or abusively (usually followed by out ): He flung out disgustedly against the whole human race.
an act of flinging.
a short period of unrestrained pursuit of one's wishes or desires: The week of partying was my last fling before starting a new job.
an attempt at something: He took a fling at playwriting.
a critical or contemptuous remark; gibe.
Also called Highland fling. a lively Scottish dance characterized by flinging movements of the arms and legs.

1250–1300; Middle English; compare Swedish flänga to fly, race

outfling, verb (used with object), outflung, outflinging.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To fling
World English Dictionary
fling (flɪŋ)
vb , flings, flinging, flung
1.  to throw, esp with force or abandon; hurl or toss
2.  to put or send without warning or preparation: to fling someone into jail
3.  (also intr) to move (oneself or a part of the body) with abandon or speed: he flung himself into a chair
4.  (usually foll by into) to apply (oneself) diligently and with vigour (to)
5.  to cast aside; disregard: she flung away her scruples
6.  to utter violently or offensively
7.  poetic to give out; emit
8.  the act or an instance of flinging; toss; throw
9.  a period or occasion of unrestrained, impulsive, or extravagant behaviour: to have a fling
10.  any of various vigorous Scottish reels full of leaps and turns, such as the Highland fling
11.  a trial; try: to have a fling at something different
[C13: of Scandinavian origin; related to Old Norse flengja to flog, Swedish flänga, Danish flænge]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

c.1300, probably from O.N. flengja, of uncertain origin. The M.E. intransitive sense is preserved in phrase have a fling at "make a try." The noun sense of "period of indulgence on the eve of responsibilities" first attested 1827. Meaning "vigorous dance" (associated with the Scottish Highlands) is from
1806. An obsolete word for "streetwalker, harlot" was fling-stink (1679).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases


In addition to the idiom beginning with fling, also see last fling.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
From the rocky cliffs above the ocean, free divers fling themselves with abandon into the rugged surf.
Windows fling open as the city breaks winter's half-year clamp.
He wanted to run around and grab every card and fling them into the fire.
Apes can climb trees, eat bananas, and fling dung at one another.
Idioms & Phrases
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature