Also called, especially British, torch. a small, portable electric lamp powered by dry batteries or a tiny generator.
a light that flashes, as a lighthouse beacon.
any source of artificial light as used in flash photography.

1885–90; flash + light1

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World English Dictionary
flashlight (ˈflæʃˌlaɪt)
1.  chiefly (US), (Canadian) Also called (in Britain and certain other countries): torch a small portable electric lamp powered by one or more dry batteries
2.  photog Sometimes shortened to: flash the brief bright light emitted by an electronic flash unit
3.  chiefly (US), (Canadian) a light that flashes, used for signalling, in a lighthouse, etc

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

Amer.Eng. for what the British might call an electric torch, 1919, from flash + light (n.).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
The independent political leadership will have find its way with a flashlight,
  wherever, that ends.
Once, during power outage, candidate shown rare-book stacks by flashlight.
He rolled into position and gave me the signal to turn on the flashlight.
He was the guy with the gun and the flashlight, he wouldn't hear of it.
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