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Possibly suggested by fluff and flop. US; as verb from 1924, noun from 1953.


  • IPA(key): /flʌb/
  • (file)


flub (plural flubs)

  1. (informal) An error; a mistake in the performance of an action.
    • 1962 November 6, Richard Nixon, “Gentlemen, this is my last press conference”, 2008, Rick Perlstein (editor), Richard Nixon: Speeches, Writings, Documents, page 111,
      I made a talk on television, a talk in which I made a flub—one of the few that I make, not because I′m so good on television but because I′ve been doing it a long time. I made a flub in which I said I was running for governor of the United States.
    • 1997, Garry Marshall, Lori Marshall, Wake Me When It′s Funny: How to Break into Show Business and Stay, page 280,
      A flub can be a slight cinematic slip-up or a major gaffe.
    • 2002, John Sheirer, Shut Up and Speak!: Essential Guidelines for Public Speaking in School, Work, and Life[1], page 56:
      The pressure public speaking puts on a person will occasionally cause these little flubs, so don′t panic when they happen to you.
      The worst way to deal with a flub is to panic and make a big deal out of it.



flub (third-person singular simple present flubs, present participle flubbing, simple past and past participle flubbed)

  1. (transitive) To goof, fumble, or err in the performance of an action.
    • 2003, Trevor Pearson, Living Strictly fore! Pleasure, pages 88-89,
      ‘Stage fright? So? What are you babbling ′bout? You′re mad as a snake!’
      ‘Ever since I was a kid. I was in the Christmas Pageant one year and flubbed my line.’
      ‘What was your line?’
      ‘I told you I flubbed it!’ he mouthed these words hysterically.
    • 2008, D. L. White, Acting For Film And Television[2], page 37:
      The actor that detained her had one line in that particular scene and flubbed it. And then flubbed it again...and again. And again, all the while assuring the director and the crew that he ‘knew his lines’ and then flubbed them again.
    • 2011, Ric Meyers, Films of Fury: The Kung Fu Movie Book[3], page 129:
      But even after the film ended, Jackie left his audience happy by including outtakes during the end credits — but not outtakes of flubbed lines (as in Cannonball Run) ... outtakes of flubbed stunts (including some painful shots of the bar room brawl and clock-tower fall that go horribly wrong)!


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