AskDefine | Define flash

Dictionary Definition

flash adj : tastelessly showy; "a flash car"; "a flashy ring"; "garish colors"; "a gaudy costume"; "loud sport shirts"; "a meretricious yet stylish book"; "tawdry ornaments" [syn: brassy, cheap, flashy, garish, gaudy, gimcrack, loud, meretricious, tacky, tatty, tawdry, trashy]


1 a sudden intense burst of radiant energy
2 a momentary brightness
3 a short vivid experience; "a flash of emotion swept over him"; "the flashings of pain were a warning" [syn: flashing]
4 a sudden brilliant understanding; "he had a flash of intuition"
5 a very short time (as the time it takes the eye blink or the heart to beat); "if I had the chance I'd do it in a flash" [syn: blink of an eye, heartbeat, instant, jiffy, split second, trice, twinkling, wink, New York minute]
6 a burst of light used to communicate or illuminate [syn: flare]
7 a short news announcement concerning some on-going news story [syn: news bulletin, newsflash, newsbreak]
8 a bright patch of color used for decoration or identification; "red flashes adorned the airplane"; "a flash sewn on his sleeve indicated the unit he belonged to"
9 a lamp for providing momentary light to take a photograph [syn: photoflash, flash lamp, flashgun, flashbulb, flash bulb]


1 gleam or glow intermittently; "The lights were flashing" [syn: blink, wink, twinkle, winkle]
2 appear briefly; "The headlines flashed on the screen"
3 display proudly; act ostentatiously or pretentiously; "he showed off his new sports car" [syn: flaunt, show off, ostentate, swank]
4 make known or cause to appear with great speed; "The latest intelligence is flashed to all command posts"
5 run or move very quickly or hastily; "She dashed into the yard" [syn: dart, dash, scoot, scud, shoot]
6 expose or show briefly; "he flashed a $100 bill"
7 protect by covering with a thin sheet of metal; "flash the roof"
8 emit a brief burst of light; "A shooting star flashed and was gone"

User Contributed Dictionary



From the word flashen (to splash), a variant of flasken, which was likely of imitative origin.


  • Hyphenation: flash (one syllable)
  • Rhymes with: -æʃ


  1. To briefly illuminate a scene.
    He flashed the light at the water, trying to see what made the noise.
  2. To blink; to shine or illuminate intermittently.
    The light flashed on and off.
  3. To be visible briefly.
    The scenery flashed by quickly.
  4. To make visible briefly.
    A number will be flashed on the screen.
  5. To write to the memory of an updatable component such as a BIOS chip or games cartridge.
  6. ambitransitive informal To expose one's naked body in public briefly.
  7. To release the pressure from a pressurized vessel.

Related terms

See also


briefly illuminate a scene
be visible briefly
make visible briefly
expose one's naked body briefly in public


  1. A sudden, short, temporary burst of light.
  2. A language, created by a repressed minority to maintain cultural identity, that cannot be understood by the ruling class; for example, ebonics.
  3. A very short amount of time.
    • 1876, Mark Twain, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
      Quick—something must be done! done in a flash, too! But the very imminence of the emergency paralyzed his invention.
  4. Material left around the edge of a moulded part at the parting line of the mould.
  5. The strips of bright cloth or buttons worn around the collars of market traders.


  • (sudden, short, temporary burst of light:) gleam, glint
  • (material left around the egde of a mould:) moulding flash, molding flash


  • (very short amount of time:) aeon


  • (sudden, short, temporary burst of light:) light


burst of light


  1. In the context of "UK|and|NZ|slang": Expensive looking and attention worthy.
(compare flashy)


expensive looking and attention worthy



Extensive Definition

Flash may refer to:
In technology:
In media:
flash in Catalan: Flash
flash in Danish: Flash
flash in German: Flash
flash in Spanish: Flash
flash in French: Flash
flash in Korean: 플래시
flash in Croatian: Flash
flash in Italian: Flash
flash in Hebrew: פלאש
flash in Hungarian: Flash
flash in Dutch: Flash
flash in Japanese: フラッシュ
flash in Polish: Flash
flash in Portuguese: Flash
flash in Romanian: Flash
flash in Russian: Flash
flash in Swedish: Flash
flash in Thai: แฟลช
flash in Turkish: Flash
flash in Chinese: Flash

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Teletype, advertise, air, antelope, arrow, automatic response, backfire, bang, be bright, beacon, beam, beat the drum, bedazzle, blare, blast, blaze, blaze of light, blazon forth, blind, blind impulse, blink, blowout, blowup, blue darter, blue streak, bob up, bolt, boom, brain wave, brainstorm, brandish, break forth, breath, breathing, bulletin, burn, burst, burst forth, burst out, cable, cannonball, cast, chic, classy, coruscate, coruscation, coup, courser, crack, dangle, dart, dash, daze, dazzle, dazzling, debouch, deflagration, demonstrate, detonation, diffuse light, dip, discharge, display, disport, drive, eagle, electricity, emblazon, erupt, exchange colors, exhibit, exhibition, explosion, expose, express train, facula, fancy, flag, flag down, flame, flare, flare up, flare-up, flash fire, flashy, flaunt, fleeting impulse, flick, flicker, flickering, flourish, fly, fulgurate, fulguration, fulmination, gazelle, give a signal, give light, give the nod, glance, glare, gleam, gleam of light, glimmer, glimpse, glint, glisten, glitter, glow, greased lightning, greyhound, gut response, hail, hail and speak, half a jiffy, half a mo, half a second, half a shake, half an eye, half-mast, hare, hasten, hint, hoist a banner, hold up, hurry, iffy, impulse, incandesce, indication, inspiration, instant, instinct, involuntary impulse, irrupt, jet plane, jiff, jiffy, kick, leer, light, lightning, luster, make a sign, manifest, manifestation, mercury, microsecond, millisecond, minute, moment, natural impulse, news report, nod, notion, nudge, ostentatious, outbreak, outburst, parade, peek, peep, poke, pop up, put forth, put forward, quick hunch, quick sight, quicksilver, quiver, race, radiate, radio, raise a cry, rapid glance, ray, reflex, report, ritzy, rocket, run, rush, salute, scamper, scared rabbit, scintilla, scintillate, scintillation, scoot, scuttle, sec, second, send a wire, send out rays, shaft, shake, shimmer, shine, shine brightly, shoot, shoot out rays, shot, show, show off, showy, sign, sign off, sign on, signal, signalize, skedaddle, slant, smart, snazzy, solar flare, solar prominence, sound an alarm, sound the trumpet, spangle, spark, sparkle, speak, speed, split second, sport, spring up, sprint, squiz, start up, streak, streak of lightning, striped snake, stroke, sudden thought, suggestion, swallow, swish, take off, tear, telegram, telegraph, telex, thought, thunderbolt, tick, torrent, touch, trice, trot out, trumpet, trumpet forth, twink, twinkle, twinkling, twitch, two shakes, unfurl a flag, urge, vaunt, wave, wave a flag, wave the hand, whistle, whiz, wind, wink, wire, zoom
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