from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A tart with a filling of custard, fruit, or cheese.
  • n. See crème caramel.
  • n. A metal disk to be stamped as a coin; a blank.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Baked tart with sweet or savoury filling in an open-topped pastry case (the only meaning in UK)
  • n. Type of custard dessert, popular in Spanish-speaking countries (both the pastry version and this one may be called flan in the USA). Called crème caramel in UK
  • n. A flat metal disk used to strike coins.
  • n. A fan of U.S. TV series Firefly; a Browncoat.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • In architecture, to splay or bevel internally, as a window-jamb.
  • n. A sudden gust of wind from the land; a flaw.
  • n. Smoke driven down the chimney by gusts of wind.
  • n. A small round net for covering the openings of rabbit-burrows when the rabbits are hunted with ferrets.
  • n. A piece of metal shaped ready to form a coin, but not yet stamped by the die. Same as blank, 9.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. open pastry filled with fruit or custard


French, from Old French flaon, from Late Latin fladō, fladōn-, flat cake, of Germanic origin; see plat- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
(1846) French flan ("cheesecake, custard tart, flan"), from Old French flaon, from Late Latin fladonem, accusative of flado ("flat cake"), from Frankish *flado ("flat cake"), from Proto-Germanic *flaþô (“flatcake”), from Proto-Indo-European *plat-, *pla- (“flat, broad”), from Proto-Indo-European *pele- (“to spread out, broad, flat”). Akin to Old High German flado ("flat cake, offering cake"). More at flathe. (Wiktionary)
English, from a slip of the tongue by actor Nathan Fillion (Wiktionary)



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