Build your vocabulary with Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day! Each day a Merriam-Webster editor offers insight into a fascinating new word -- explaining its meaning, current use, and little-known details about its origin.
October 24th, 2015
Episode 359 of 689 episodes
Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for October 24, 2015 is: flimflam \FLIM-flam\ verb : to subject to deception or fraud Examples: The people behind the e-mail scam tried to flimflam unsuspecting users into giving out their credit card information and Social Security numbers. "Dozens of Central New Yorkers were flimflammed into investing in a dying company because they were fed false information about its financial condition, a federal lawsuit says." John O'Brien, The Post Standard (Syracuse, New York), 2 May 2015 Did you know? English is full of words concerned with trickery and deception, ranging from the colorful flimflam, bamboozle, and hornswoggle to the more mundane deceive, mislead, and delude. Flimflam first entered English as a noun meaning "deceptive nonsense" in the 16th century. A sense meaning "deception" or "fraud" soon developed. The verb use didn't show up until well into the next century. In addition to general deceiving or tricking, the verb flimflam is often used specifically to refer to swindling someone out of money. The ultimate origin of flimflam is uncertain, but the word is probably of Scandinavian origin and may be related to the Old Norse flim, meaning "mockery."
Have you trembled ‘round the campfire as the ghost stories are told? Do tales of horrors wrought by nature and beyond strike fear in your soul? Is it best when you are afraid to turn out the light? Thrill to stories that strike at your deepest fears, as host Stephen Kilpatrick brings the best of horror fiction to your ears and your mind, read to you by the most chilling narrators that podcasting has to offer. <br /> <br /> Podcasting the finest in genre fiction, Tales to Terrify is where the depths of horror reveal the truths of good, evil, and the human spirit in the District of Wonders podcast network. Like all shows in the District of Wonders, Tales to Terrify is supported by a welcoming community of dedicated fans and contributors. Subscribe today, and begin your journey through the spine-tingling depths of storytelling.<br /> <br /> Everyone has a story in the District of Wonders. Come and find yours.