9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[fleks] /flɛks/
verb (used with object)
to bend, as a part of the body:
He flexed his arms to show off his muscles.
to tighten (a muscle) by contraction.
verb (used without object)
to bend.
the act of flexing.
  1. any flexible, insulated electric cord; an electric cord or extension cord.
  2. Slang. an elastic band, as a garter.
Mathematics. an inflection point.
Origin of flex1
1515-25; (adj.) < Latin flexus, past participle of flectere to bend, turn; (noun) < Latin flexus act of bending, equivalent to flect(ere) + -tus suffix of v. action


[fleks] /flɛks/
Informal. flexible:
a flex program of workers' benefits.
shortening of flexible


a combining form representing flexible in compound words:
Also, flexi-. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for flex
  • Because the legs are long, you can flex them slightly to get everything to line up.
  • We admire those who are able to flex and strut in their research and theory and discourse.
  • It was a drought-dry summer, and in the suspension of rain everything seemed to flex.
  • Do this all the way around rather than trying to flex the photograph itself.
  • Exchange rates constantly flex to offset inflation and keep living standards in perspective.
  • Every waking moment his muscles flex out of his control, twisting his body into unusual positions.
  • In a living shark, every tooth has ten to fifteen degrees of flex.
  • Elastic bound flex cuffs help seal in thermal warmth without sliding down your wrist on prolonged reaches.
  • Contrary to popular belief, they do have room enough to strut and flex their wings-but not much.
  • It sticks without the need for any glue, and can flex and stretch without breaking.
British Dictionary definitions for flex


(Brit) a flexible insulated electric cable, used esp to connect appliances to mains US and Canadian name cord
(informal) flexibility or pliability
to bend or be bent: he flexed his arm, his arm flexed
to contract (a muscle) or (of a muscle) to contract
(intransitive) to work according to flexitime
to test or display (one's authority or strength)
Word Origin
C16: from Latin flexus bent, winding, from flectere to bend, bow
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 flex

1520s, probably a back-formation from flexible. Related: Flexed; flexing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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flex in Medicine

flex (flěks)
v. flexed, flex·ing, flex·es

  1. To bend.

  2. To contract a muscle.

  3. To move a joint so that the parts it connects approach each other.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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flex in Technology

1. Faster LEX.
2. A real-time language for dynamic environments.
["FLEX: Towards Flexible Real-Time Programs", K. Lin et al, Computer Langs 16(1):65-79, Jan 1991].
3. An early object-oriented language developed for the FLEX machine by Alan Kay in about 1967. The FLEX language was a simplification of Simula and a predecessor of Smalltalk.

software, hardware
A system developed by Ian Currie (Iain?) at the (then) Royal Signals and Radar Establishment at Malvern in the late 1970s. The hardware was custom and microprogrammable, with an operating system, (modular) compiler, editor, garbage collector and filing system all written in Algol-68. Flex was also re-implemented on the Perq(?).
[I. F. Currie and others, "Flex Firmware", Technical Report, RSRE, Number 81009, 1981].
[I. F. Currie, "In Praise of Procedures", RSRE, 1982].
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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