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[fluhs-ter] /ˈflʌs tər/
verb (used with object)
to put into a state of agitated confusion:
His constant criticism flustered me.
to excite and confuse with drink.
verb (used without object)
to become agitatedly confused.
nervous excitement or confusion.
late Middle English
1375-1425; late Middle English flostren; cf. bluster, Old Norse flaustra to hurry
Related forms
unflustered, adjective
1. upset, bewilder, disconcert, disturb. 4. turmoil, agitation, upset, bewilderment, distraction. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for flustered
  • Tuba finds herself flustered and speechless, stumbling over the rehearsed political boilerplate she is expected to deliver.
  • If you're new to the tenure track, there's a good chance you are inordinately flustered by problem students.
  • Practice saying these things so you aren't flustered and so that you don't ramble before getting to the real heart of your answer.
  • Daffy tries to adapt, apologizing to the audience for the trouble, but grows increasingly flustered as the changes continue.
  • Then at crunch time, they get so flustered and frustrated that they act out aggressively.
  • When the witness pointed this out, the flustered inquisitor seemed to come apart.
  • If the interviewer seems to ignore you, do not get flustered.
  • flustered, they inserted the control rods again, which prompted a further acceleration of the power.
  • Mitt got flustered, once again, by questions about his taxes.
  • As he sometimes does when he's flustered, he started talking faster and rambling.
British Dictionary definitions for flustered


to make or become confused, nervous, or upset
a state of confusion or agitation
Word Origin
C15: probably of Scandinavian origin; compare Icelandic flaustr to hurry, flaustra to bustle
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 flustered



early 15c. (implied in flostyrynge), from a Scandinavian source (cf. Icelandic flaustr "bustle," flaustra "to bustle"). Originally "to excite," especially with drink; sense of "to flurry, confuse" is from 1724. Related: Flustered; flustering. As a noun, 1710, from the verb.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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