Definition of flat adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//flæt//
    ; NAmE NAmE//flæt//
    (flatter, flattest) Describing geographic regions, Reading music
    jump to other results
  1. 1  having a level surface, not curved or sloping low buildings with flat roofs People used to think the earth was flat. Exercise is the only way to get a flat stomach after having a baby. The sails hung limply in the flat calm (= conditions at sea when there is no wind and the water is completely level).
  2. 2  (of land) without any slopes or hills The road stretched ahead across the flat landscape. The desert was flat, mile after mile. He reached a flatter section of land near the river. See related entries: Describing geographic regions
  3. 3  (of surfaces) smooth and even; without lumps or holes I need a flat surface to write on. We found a large flat rock to sit on.
  4. not high
  5. 4  broad but not very high Chapattis are a kind of flat Indian bread. flat shoes (= with no heels or very low ones)
  6. dull
  7. 5dull; lacking interest or enthusiasm He felt very flat after his friends had gone home. It was a curiously flat note on which to end the election campaign.
  8. voice
  9. 6not showing much emotion; not changing much in tone Her voice was flat and expressionless. He spoke in a flat Midlands accent.
  10. colours/pictures
  11. 7very smooth, with no contrast between light and dark, and giving no impression of depth Acrylic paints can be used to create large, flat blocks of colour.
  12. business
  13. 8not very successful because very little is being sold The housing market has been flat for months.
  14. refusal/denial
  15. 9[only before noun] not allowing discussion or argument; definite Her request was met with a flat refusal. He gave a flat ‘No!’ to one reporter's question. These results are in flat contradiction to the theory of relativity.
  16. in music
  17. 10 used after the name of a note to mean a note a semitone / half step lower That note should be B flat, not B. opposite sharp compare natural See related entries: Reading music
  18. 11 below the correct pitch (= how high or low a note sounds) The high notes were slightly flat. opposite sharp
  19. drink
  20. 12no longer having bubbles in it; not fresh The soda was warm and had gone flat.
  21. battery
  22. 13(British English) unable to supply any more electricity
  23. tyre
  24. 14not containing enough air, usually because of a hole
  25. feet
  26. 15with no natural raised curves underneath see also flat-footed More Like This Consonant-doubling adjectives big, drab, fat, fit, flat, hot, mad, red, sad, wetSee worksheet.
  27. Word Originadjective Middle English: from Old Norse flatr. Extra examplesI can’t get this material to lie flat. Interest rates have remained flat. Shall I fold the paper flat or roll it up? She lay flat on the ground. The sea was almost completely flat. He went on in a flat tone. Life will seem a bit flat without you. She had that flat feeling that usually followed a rush of work. She was feeling very flat after the excitement of the flight. The sails hung limply in the flat calm The sense of intoxication wore off and he felt flat and weary. The town consisted mainly of low buildings with flat roofs.Idioms (British English, informal) that is my final decision and I will not change my mind You can't go and that's flat! completely flat The country around here is as flat as a pancake. More Like ThisSimiles in idioms (as) bald as a coot, (as) blind as a bat, (as) bright as a button, (as) bold as brass, as busy as a bee, as clean as a whistle, (as) dead as a/​the dodo, (as) deaf as a post, (as) dull as ditchwater, (as) fit as a fiddle, as flat as a pancake, (as) good as gold, (as) mad as a hatter/​a March hare, (as) miserable/​ugly as sin, as old as the hills, (as) pleased as Punch, as pretty as a picture, (as) regular as clockwork, (as) quick as a flash, (as) safe as houses, (as) sound as a bell, (as) steady as a rock, (as) thick as two short planks, (as) tough as old bootsSee worksheet. very confused, worried or excited Her resignation put her colleagues in a spin. See related entries: Excitement (informal) in bed because you are ill/sick She's been flat on her back for over a week now. (figurative) The UK market was flat on its back (= business was very bad).
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: flat