From Middle Englishflap, flappe(“a slap; blow; buffet; fly-flap; something flexible or loose; flap”), related to Middle Dutch flabbe("a blow; slap on the face; fly-flap; flap"; > Modern Dutch flap(“flap”)), Middle Low German flabbe, vlabbe, flebbe, from the verb (see below). Related also to English flab and flabby.
110 Fall to your flap, my Masters, kisse and clip. Ibid. 112 Come hither, you foule flappes.
Anything broad and flexible that hangs loose, or that is attached by one side or end and is easily moved.
1686, Sir Thomas Browne, chapter VIII, in The Works of the Learned Sr. Thomas Brown: Containing, Enquiries Into Vulgar and Common Errors, etc:
Again, Beside these parts destin'd to divers offices, there is a peculiar provision for the wind-pipe, that is, a cartilagineous flap upon the opening of the Larynx or Throttle, which hath an open cavity for the admiffion of the air
1998 October, Robert H. Mohlenbrock, “Twin Peaks”, in Natural History, volume 107, number 8, page 73:
The hairs guide the pollinating insect to the base of the petal, where there is a purplish nectary covered by a flap of tissue.
a flap of a garment; The envelope flap seemed curiously wrinkled.
“[…]We saw him vanish right in front of the rest of us. He was there and then he wasn’t. We were to wait for a year for his return or for some message. We waited. Nothing.” ¶ Calvin, his voice cracking: “Jeepers, sir. You must have been in sort of a flap.”
Then he commenced to talk, really talk. and inside of two flaps of a herring's fin he had me mesmerized, like Eben Holt's boy at the town hall show. He talked about the ills of humanity, and the glories of health and Nature and service and land knows what all.
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