Meaning of flight in English:


Pronunciation /flʌɪt/

See synonyms for flight

Translate flight into Spanish


  • 1mass noun The action or process of flying through the air.

    ‘an eagle in flight’
    • ‘the history of space flight’
    • ‘We were being processed for flight by a talking orange.’
    • ‘But in every generation, it seems, they try, remembering not the fall, but the heady lift of flight, the eagle soaring by.’
    • ‘I crouched, sniffing and listening, every muscle poised for flight.’
    • ‘As part of the Centennial of flight, the Ormand Flying Club is participating in the Young Eagles Program launched by the EAA in Wisconsin.’
    • ‘The fledgling landed, then began a careful advance toward the strange group, wings half open and muscles tensed for flight.’
    • ‘I pause to flex my muscles and prepare for flight in case some sort of ghost or troglodyte bursts out to eat our bones or whatever part of us a ghost might eat.’
    • ‘Two sets of opposed muscles drive her flight like pistons, faster than nerves can work.’
    • ‘I would compare it, not to the butterfly's flitting, but to the eagle's swoop and soar in flight.’
    • ‘The flight of an eagle is a beautiful thing to watch: wings outspread, gliding and dipping, effortlessly riding invisible currents.’
    • ‘At this point, it was blank, the flat screen only showing Krys's personal emblem, an eagle in flight over a galloping horse, on a field of sapphire.’
    • ‘They cover vast distances in an almost effortless gliding flight, sometimes swooping so low that the tips of their long narrow wings actually shear the waves.’
    • ‘Like an eagle in flight, the law is only stable when it moves.’
    • ‘More impressive still is an eagle in flight, when its utter immensity seems almost prehistoric.’
    • ‘In flight, the swift is easily identified by its characteristic scythe-shaped wings, and it's screaming calls.’
    • ‘They are swift in flight, but are more commonly seen roosting or foraging on the ground.’
    • ‘The camera is riveted on them, showing backs, heads and necks in never-ending flight.’
    • ‘The contract was awarded to the Wright brothers and the military's journey into the era of flight began.’
    • ‘By studying the flight of birds and insects they hope to gain some useful tips that they can transfer to their design.’
    • ‘The birds, especially, would sit on the lawn in shock for a while, then suddenly remember the art of flight and flee as fast as they could.’
    • ‘However, industry analysts believe that orbital flight will become a reality once suborbital flight is successfully established and seen to be profitable in the long term.’
    flying, soaring, gliding
    aviation, flying, air transport, aerial navigation, aeronautics
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1count noun An act of flying; a journey made through the air or in space, especially a timetabled journey made by an airline.
      ‘a return flight from Gatwick to Berlin’
      • ‘Those travelling on scheduled flights should contact their airline.’
      • ‘Rutan said the spacecraft would be safer than early commercial airline travel, and flights would not be limited to the young and superfit.’
      • ‘The deals include return flights with Continental Airlines from Gatwick and a stay at the famous Golden Nugget hotel.’
      • ‘Eventually they were offered an alternative flight with another airline and their journey began on Monday.’
      • ‘The cost includes return flights with Delta Airlines, accommodation and the tour.’
      • ‘Santana went from minor league bus rides to charter airline flights in one move.’
      • ‘The plane was on a return flight from an outing in which the couple swam with dolphins close to their luxury resort.’
      • ‘The all-expenses paid trip includes return flights and accommodation in our luxury penthouse apartment in Guadalmina.’
      • ‘By the way, Richard, before we take our next call, how much has all of this affected flights on your airline to the United States?’
      • ‘The project recently completed its first balloon flight, in the process setting a duration and distance record for balloon flights.’
      • ‘We will escort you to the boarding area for the next flight to Canada and process your tickets there.’
      • ‘On 17 May 1928, a small aircraft, leased at five shillings per mile, took off on the inaugural flight of the Flying Doctor.’
      • ‘He it was who, in the 1850s, persuaded his reluctant coachman to make the first gliding flight in history, across the valley at Brompton.’
      • ‘I travel frequently and have never been so uncomfortable nor felt so unsafe flying as on this flight.’
      • ‘Whatever the result, it will certainly help you feel relaxed and prepare you for your short flight home.’
      • ‘When we compare the present life of man on earth with that time of which we have no knowledge, it seems to me like the swift flight of a sparrow through the banqueting-hall where you are sitting at dinner on a winter's day.’
      • ‘When Concorde lands for the very last time at Heathrow this afternoon, nearly one hundred years after the Wright Brothers' first flight, the future will be over.’
      • ‘But the riddle of what became of the prized bird during his epic flight is slowly being unravelled.’
      • ‘It is a very special moment when such magnificent birds make their first flight.’
      • ‘For instance, larger species may migrate in longer flights than smaller species for ecological reasons beyond the scope of my inquiry.’
      plane trip, trip by air, air trip, journey by air, air journey
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    2. 1.2The movement or trajectory of a projectile or ball through the air.
      ‘the golfer's swing is obviously critical to the ball's flight’
      • ‘The skip pass completed, every defensive player moved with player movement and flight of the ball as dictated by the rules.’
      • ‘This basically means that there are no unnecessary moving parts in Tiger's swing, which has allowed him to control the trajectory of his ball flight better.’
      • ‘The releasing or rolling of the club head through impact ensures greater power and the ability to control the ball flight.’
      • ‘Going down under the defender's rush, Warner didn't see the ball in flight.’
      • ‘Further, his ball flight has gotten lower and more parabolic, things he says the Nike ball helps with.’
      • ‘Just keep firing the same motion and you'll see you are learning very powerful control of ball flight.’
      • ‘Chacon fired to first but the ball got lost in flight on its way to first base.’
      • ‘When the ball is in flight, he has a history of attacking it and making the big play.’
      • ‘Bell is particularly imposing when he launches himself into full flight toward a ball carrier.’
      • ‘In its path of flight, the ball began to take the shape of a spire, and struck the beast directly in the chest, freezing it in its tracks.’
      • ‘The most common direction for errant ball flight is left to right - the slice.’
      • ‘A player who is not offside when his team mate sends him the ball or sends a free kick is not penalised for an offside if he runs ahead while the ball is in flight.’
      • ‘Gregor Townsend intercepted the ball mid - flight and raced away to score a crucial try that set up a Scotland victory not only in that opening match but in the Championship itself.’
      • ‘Wanderers took the lead in curious fashion when wingman Holden seemed to cross, but to the astonishment of the players and crowd the ball swerved in flight and hit the back of the net.’
      • ‘Examine the target closely, then look down to make sure the clubface is aimed exactly on the line where the ball will begin its flight.’
      • ‘That action results in an aggressive, penetrating ball flight, sending the shot directly at the target.’
      • ‘Thus emerged a natural solution: use a high arm action to give the ball enough flight in order to pitch it further.’
      • ‘The wind was less strong but still enough to manipulate the ball in flight.’
      • ‘La Louvière appealed against the result as the ball had burst in flight.’
      • ‘Whenever a ball caroms off one player and goes into the hands of another player, the ball remains legally in flight as long as it doesn't hit the ground.’
      trajectory, track, flight path, orbit, glide path, approach
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3as modifier Relating to or denoting archery in which the main concern is shooting long distances.
      ‘short, light flight arrows’
      • ‘Turkish flight arrows often had horn tips, thus reducing weight as much as possible.’
      • ‘Flight archery is all about shooting an arrow the longest distance, so the range for a flight event will need to be very long.’
      • ‘The bows were highly efficient and the record shot with a light Turkish flight bow was close to 900 yards, far beyond the capability of a self bow.’
    4. 1.4 literary The swift passage of time.
      ‘the never-ending flight of future days’
      • ‘It bears the connotation of the passing or the flight of time - time which can never be recaptured.’
      • ‘Her timid reminders concerning the flight of time and consequent fines for lateness at work fell on deaf ears.’
  • 2A flock or large body of birds or insects in the air, especially when migrating.

    ‘flights of whooper swans’
    • ‘This is a region dotted with Chotts, lakes and salt marshes that expand and subtract with the seasons, attracting vast flights of birds as well as herds.’
    • ‘A flight of birds flew up through the sky, frightened of whoever was there.’
    • ‘Some of these dances represented the caribou hunt; others might portray a flight of birds or a battle with the weather.’
    flock, flying group
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1A group of aircraft operating together, especially an RAF or USAF unit of about six aircraft.
      ‘he dispatched the Hurricanes in three flights’
      • ‘Though each side had fewer aircraft and smaller flights, the combat was just as deadly.’
      • ‘Fortunately the second aircraft in the flight missed the wires completely, possibly by flying under them.’
      • ‘Whenever the weather cooperated, FAS sent flights of aircraft to hit the British task force.’
      • ‘On each side of the nose is painted a rather generous unit badge with the flight's nickname of Banners.’
      • ‘Four flights of four RAAF Mosquitos would follow as the second squadron.’
      • ‘There have been operational support flights before but never a squadron of this size.’
      • ‘There were only two flights strafing and the second section called to see if they could start strafing.’
      • ‘Next were two Air Force Hercules followed by two flights of Hornets, four in each flight.’
  • 3mass noun The action of fleeing.

    ‘the enemy were now in flight’
    • ‘a headlong flight from reality’
    • ‘Among the wildlife in headlong flight is a scorpion.’
    • ‘The twenty-eight year old poet was theoretically en route from Milan; in reality he was in flight from an England which was still agog at rumours of his lunatic behaviour.’
    • ‘True historical breakthroughs, in which the defender is shocked into inaction or headlong flight, are almost impossible to achieve.’
    • ‘Fischli and Weiss are known for their use of humble stuff that is in headlong flight from rareness and highness, and these photos were no exception.’
    • ‘It is likely though that his low intelligence would have made it more difficult for him to cope with the tragic death of his son and contributed to his flight from reality.’
    • ‘The flight from that reality strikes me as a more profound pathology than the reality itself.’
    • ‘Henry disengaged himself from his flight and resignedly returned home.’
    • ‘The months of fear and flight had left an imprint of homelessness.’
    • ‘The migration of former slaves to the Midwest during the Civil War was a flight toward freedom as well as an escape from the violence and chaos of war.’
    • ‘These stairs were broader than the others they'd ascended in their flight.’
    escape, getaway, fleeing, running away, absconding, retreat, departure, hasty departure, exit, exodus, decamping, disappearance, vanishing
    View synonyms
    1. 3.1The selling of currency or shares by many investors.
      ‘an anti-inflationary move aimed at stemming the flight of capital’
      • ‘No investor flight has happened yet, but hot money can leave the region as fast as it roars in.’
      • ‘They signal capital flight by Western investors, I have not yet noticed, but then, I cannot keep an eye on everything.’
      • ‘Here the response to currency devaluation and capital flight would be to impose further cuts on social policies and further constraints on the poor.’
      • ‘The disciplining economic feedback mechanism of currency devaluation and capital flight was suspended by decree during the Asian crisis.’
      • ‘The deep fall in shares and the increasing flight of capital warns of a catastrophe for the economy.’
      • ‘Another macro-level event that affects companies and investors is the flight of capital and devaluation of exchange rates.’
      • ‘Most are running huge current account deficits, and capital flight out of the countries is significant.’
      • ‘There were no job losses or flight of capital, and this summer Denmark took on the presidency of the EU.’
      • ‘True, the progress so far is minuscule compared with the problems created by decades of capital flight, abysmal schools, and drug abuse.’
      • ‘But the decision has not ended the inflow of speculative capital, or ended the risk of capital flight if the investment bubble collapses.’
  • 4A series of steps between floors or levels.

    ‘I climbed the three flights of stairs which led to his office’
    • ‘They made their way up to the fourth floor via a creaky flight of steps.’
    • ‘She walked around the ground level looking for the flight of stairs that led to the second floor.’
    • ‘Muketsu, the first in Chizome's line, climbed the short flight of stairs and stepped to the front of the altar.’
    • ‘I finally thought to get off on the fourth floor and descend a flight of stairs, only to find that a custodian had roped off that end of the third-floor hallway for mopping.’
    • ‘Victoria collapsed and fell down the last few steps of an internal flight of stairs on Monday morning.’
    • ‘I struggled up seven floors, fourteen flights of stairs, on my walking stick to the rooftop sculptures of Casa Batlow.’
    • ‘Without effort she ran silently up the four flights of steps to Senator Montgomery's floor.’
    • ‘If you are feeling lazy, and the prospect of climbing the flight of 800 steps to the monastery is too daunting, you can always choose to take a donkey.’
    • ‘It was difficult for her to climb the flight of steps to the podium.’
    • ‘We climbed down a flight of steps into the steamy depths of the earth where the spring still spouts at 46 degrees C.’
    • ‘He lived on the middle floor, only two flights of stairs and no lift.’
    • ‘Three large bedrooms lie off the spacious landing at this level and a small flight of stairs leads to a fourth bedroom.’
    • ‘Curiosity took the better of me as I stepped the flight of stairs up into the dandy store.’
    • ‘He said he has a huge struggle to climb the six flights of stairs up to his flat on the second floor.’
    • ‘I went down a flight of stairs to level three, the guys' dorms.’
    • ‘Lisa stepped off the flight of stairs and smiled at Danny, waving goodbye to Megan's mother.’
    • ‘We walked down the stairs very slowly, taking each flight together, keeping in pace with each other.’
    • ‘I turned and fled down the first flight of stairs and stopped outside the door to the 9th floor, breathing heavily.’
    • ‘As she ascended two flights, a weight settled in her stomach, accompanied by a mounting dread.’
    • ‘The stairs ascend in three flights to a wide hallway on the second floor, which gives the house its name.’
    staircase, set of stairs, set of steps
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    1. 4.1A series of hurdles across a racetrack.
      ‘Istabraq was pulled up after just two flights of hurdles and second favourite Valiramix, partnered by Tony McCoy, had to be put down after suffering a serious leg injury.’
      • ‘Conditions were so bad at the Berkshire course that the last flight of hurdles was moved 100 yards forward and the last race of the day had to be abandoned because of poor visibility.’
      • ‘It was clear that Rayshan was on a steep learning curve, and in the back straight he fiddled the sixth flight of hurdles, and suddenly his glittering potential looked set to be tarnished.’
      • ‘And all because the horse on which they had wagered all of two quid each-way had fallen at the first flight of hurdles, accidentally.’
      • ‘Roche revealed afterwards: I was full of confidence before the race but I was anything but sure as they raced to the last flight of hurdles.’
      • ‘Every time I look at a flight of hurdles now I can still feel myself making the three strides between each and then getting my legs in the right position.’
      • ‘When the pace was accelerated at the half way point Geraghty was in the best possible place to take full advantage and he was clear of his field at the last flight of hurdles.’
      • ‘Grand Jete looked like landing the spoils for Nicky Henderson when he powered into the lead between the last two flights, but he made a mistake at the final hurdle.’
      • ‘The race sprung to life at the second flight when leader Westender refused to jump the hurdle and also knocked the favourite Rule Supreme out of contention.’
      • ‘Last March he came to the last flight in the Champion Hurdle locked in combat with Hardy Eustace and Harchibald, no other horse left with a chance.’
      • ‘The Cheltenham crowds were stunned when jockey Charlie Swan pulled up on favourite Istabraq with his mount tailed off just two flights into this year's Hurdle running.’
      • ‘None of the 26-strong field was prepared to set a testing pace, and the winner was always travelling well before making a move three flights out under Barry Geraghty.’
      • ‘The fairytale ended in 2002 when Swan was forced to pull up Istabraq in his last attempt to break the Cheltenham record after two flights.’
      • ‘But then three flights from home while on the flat, Valiramix clipped the heels of the horse in front and crashed to the ground.’
      • ‘He attempted that in 2002 but his preparations had been blighted by injury and he was pulled up after just two flights.’
      • ‘After Chief Yeoman and Howle Hill took the lead rounding the final bend, Made in Japan moved to challenge at the last flight.’
      • ‘Royal Rosa disappointed on his seasonal debut after making a horrific mistake at the first flight.’
      • ‘Heading towards the final flight, I still felt we would win.’
    2. 4.2A sequence of locks by which a canal ascends an incline.
      ‘At Nob End, Little Lever, walkers can see the unique lock flight that lifted canal boats up 66 feet in just 200 yards.’
      • ‘The waterway is a thread linking many architectural and engineering triumphs, including aqueducts, pumping stations and lock flights.’
      • ‘Mr Jones's father set up the scrap business at the foot of Caen Hill, near the famous flight of locks on the Kennet and Avon Canal.’
      • ‘Up and up, never resting, even though he has eleven flights to ascend.’
      • ‘We'd picked up the boat from Crown Blue Line at Castelnaudry, and after a brief driving lesson in the large canal basin in the middle of town, had nervously entered the first of a downward flight of locks.’
      • ‘The flight of locks at Falkirk followed suit in 1933, but the rest of the canal survived intact until it was closed to navigation in 1965.’
  • 5A selection of small portions of a particular type of food or drink (especially alcohol) intended to be tasted together for the purpose of comparison.

    • ‘I had a flight of four ales and liked them all’
  • 6An extravagant or far-fetched idea or thought process.

    ‘his research assistant was prone to flights of fancy’
    • ‘This talk of funk, punk and devil-worship is starting to fuel a few wild suggestions and flights of fancy.’
    • ‘It was much funnier than it sounds, and the four physicians that showed up to create this cast that inspires my weird flights of fancy and I were all howling.’
    • ‘Raspberries have inspired flights of fancy in haute cuisine, most often in the guise of syrups and sauces used as an accompaniment to other fruits such as pears and figs.’
    • ‘The irrevocable dissolution of the magical Tumble Room gives it a psychological weight beyond its filmic illusion and flights of fancy.’
    • ‘However, if, as this week suggested, Vogts can keep his flights of fancy in check, he might be given the opportunity to prove that he has assembled a squad with a modicum of potential.’
    • ‘While Miralles was reprimanded for his sudden flights of fancy, he was, as the inquiry suggested last week, allowed to continue setting the pace.’
    • ‘The Handler suggests that these boasts were no flights of fancy.’
    • ‘It eliminated all pauses for inspiration, and freed heedless flights of fancy.’
    • ‘The show is rounded out by heavy duty wordsmith Fortner Anderson, the quiet intensity of Jason Selman's poetry, and a sampling of Harris's own fevered flights of fancy.’
    • ‘I'm sure when I'm taken to flights of fancy on my fast, I shall imagine that I am being subconsciously willed to loosen my skin so that the people who run Pension Perez can cut off my face and wear it like a mask.’
    • ‘Henry has now taken his place as one of the top striking threats in Europe, while Kanu's languid, idiosyncratic flights of fancy regularly befuddle Premiership defenders.’
    • ‘The film does not hold water when it comes to being logical or plausible, but this a minor grievance when one accepts that the flights of fancy harden the aura of solemnity that the film strives for.’
    • ‘Their imaginations must be feverish enough to conjure up ever more daring flights of fancy, but then cold enough to try to annihilate their own creations.’
    • ‘I am not given to flights of fancy, soppy tales of love and romance and I was certainly not looking for love.’
    • ‘The current Scotland captain, as anyone who has attended a post-match press conference after a Scotland defeat will testify, is not given to flights of fancy.’
    • ‘They unconsciously finish each other's sentences, and fearlessly embark on dizzying flights of fancy, more than confident they can talk each other down.’
    • ‘But the house-share, thankfully, was just a springboard for some surreal flights of fancy, particularly aimed at film buffs.’
    • ‘In spite of its length (over two and a half hours) and occasional flights of fancy, it has a rewardingly esoteric heart.’
    • ‘Phil has these huge flights of fancy where he has a different plan for the future every five seconds, and has such a laid-back attitude, which I really admire.’
    • ‘It's a masterwork of narrative mutation, of horrendous flights of fatal fantasy locked inside the brain of a truly troubled soul.’
  • 7The tail of a dart.

    ‘The standard clock-face became established in the late 19th century, and paper flights to fit the darts were patented in 1898.’
    • ‘Believe it or not, you can buy flights for darts that come complete with the smell of stale beer.’
    • ‘In fact it suggests to us nothing less than a set of plastic dart flights.’
    • ‘We had trick shots with Jamie throwing the darts flight first and Alan on his knees finishing doubles to the delight of a good crowd.’
    • ‘My preferred method of getting a flight out of the way of an incoming dart is for the flights to pop off easily on contact.’
    • ‘Well, if there was one specific, component of a dart, that affects the control, consistency and accuracy of shooting a dart more than anything else, it would have to be the flight!’


[with object]
  • 1British (in soccer, cricket, etc.) deliver (a ball) with well-judged trajectory and pace.

    ‘he flighted a free kick into the box’
    • ‘Midway through the first period, Gareth Williams delivered a well flighted ball into the box and Kirk Jackson sent a soaring header over Mark Ovendale from 18 yards.’
    • ‘The visitors' defence was finally breached when Stuart Airedrie's excellently flighted ball was dropped by the stand-in keeper and defender Jonathan Best was quickest to react and placed the ball in the bottom corner.’
    • ‘Lofthouse flighted the ball beyond the last defender and centre half Stuart Dibb stole in to steer his finish beyond Mitchell.’
    • ‘Sagnol flights the ball to Vieira, who slams his volley into the ground.’
    • ‘Carrick nearly plays Rooney in with a beautifully flighted ball forward, but Ecuador scamper back to recover possession.’
    • ‘I bowled round the wicket, wide of the crease, flighted the ball more and bowled bouncers as well.’
    • ‘Though someone like Kumble might be a glorious exception, spinners need to flight the ball to achieve spin, unless they are bowling on a vicious turner.’
    • ‘There was space to be found behind the Germany back four and when Francesco Totti flighted a through ball five minutes later it was only an unsatisfactory touch by Simone Perrotta that let Lehmann block.’
    • ‘Gary Hay took a quick free-kick at the edge of the box for the overlapping midfielder who trotted almost to the bye-line before flighting the ball to McSwegan at the far post.’
    • ‘Sertori, pilloried by many, showed his worth by winning York their first corner of the match then flicking on Agnew's carefully flighted dead ball at the near post.’
    • ‘Ronaldinho promptly flighted the ball over Seaman and into the far corner of the net after spotting the England shotstopper had left his line.’
    • ‘With the pitch offering him little assistance, he flighted the ball generously.’
    • ‘Twice in the opening moments of the second half, the England captain flighted a ball 60 yards into the new man's path.’
    • ‘From the resultant corner Latapy flighted the ball into the heart of the crowded penalty area.’
    • ‘Yesterday he out-bowled Ashley Giles and worked hard for the wicket of Salman Butt, flighting the ball to tempt the left-hander into indiscretion.’
    • ‘McNaughton stole the ball off his toe and drove forward before flighting a lovely ball on to the head of Mackie.’
    • ‘Delivering a beautifully flighted cross from the right in the 56th minute, slack marking allowed Bobo Balde to rise majestically and power a header high into the net.’
    • ‘A promising start by a depleted Harps saw Finian Brett race through the Killeshin defence before delivering a perfectly flighted cross onto the head of Aidan Power who scored in the 8th minute.’
    • ‘Then Connolly connected with Lockwood's well flighted free-kick to send in a volley which Dobson did well to gather.’
    • ‘Ronaldinho wastes a chance to flight a free-kick into the penalty area, hitting the first Japanese defender instead.’
    bowl, pitch, hurl, throw, cast, launch, lob
    View synonyms
  • 2Provide (an arrow or dart) with feathers or vanes.

    ‘shafts of wood flighted with a handful of feathers’
    • ‘The chances are that Mark Andy flighted the dart.’
    • ‘My dad still has his original goose feather flighted darts too.’
  • 3Shoot (wildfowl) in flight.

    as noun flighting ‘duck and geese flighting’
    • ‘This accessible estate has a pheasant shoot, roe deerstalking and duck flighting - plus stables’


    in full flight
    • 1Escaping as fast as possible.

      • ‘soon the infantry were in full flight’
      1. 1.1Having gained momentum in a run or activity.
        ‘Yorke was brought down in full flight’
        • ‘Coventry skipper Paul Williams conceded a free-kick on the edge of his own penalty area after bringing down Ryan Giggs in full flight.’
        • ‘The sight of Watson in full flight would have brought a smile to even the most sour of faces.’
        • ‘There was some justice attached to the goal, for the free-kick had been awarded when Alex Rae brought down Darren Huckerby in full flight.’
        • ‘In yet another defining moment, Paul Dodds scythed down a sixteen stone Tongan in full flight to inspire those around him.’
        • ‘Few people watching really realised just how fast these boys travel when in full flight, and they were in full flight, bunched dangerously close together in a race for the line.’
        • ‘The Blues though were in total command and Huckerby completed his hat-trick from the penalty spot 60 seconds later after Matthieu Louis-Jean brought down Jensen who was in full flight.’
        • ‘He was brought on to bowl with Fleming and Astle in full flight, and struck with his fifth delivery, which nipped in to beat the left-hander's bat and knock off the bails.’
        • ‘He has released the good news that his Bank Holiday reunion is in full flight and will be attended by many locals who are coming home to join the celebration that weekend.’
        • ‘While people are often quoting Micheal and other well known broadcasters, there is no doubt that Roscommon's own Willie comes up with some remarkable humorous gems when in full flight.’
        • ‘With Barney Maher back in full flight and with the possible return of the towering Larry Keenan it will be a different ball game.’
    put someone or something to flight
    • Cause someone or something to flee.

      ‘the hussars would have been put to flight’
      • ‘Dawn said she joined in the attack with a hosepipe and a stick, and these, combined with continued attacks from the robins in particular, put the snake to flight and they eventually drove it into nearby thick bush.’
      • ‘I will send faintness into their hearts in the lands of their enemies; the sound of a driven leaf shall put them to flight, and they shall flee as one flees from the sword, and they shall fall when none pursues.’
      • ‘Christ is risen and the devils are put to flight!’
      • ‘All that peacock display was put to flight by George Bryan Brummell, whose subliminal influence on male costume persists to this day.’
      • ‘They are made from pods or carved from the wood of a tree which is said in one text to be able ‘to put witches to flight.’’
      • ‘A vocal citizenry can put the chickenhawks to flight.’
      • ‘Wongyu at once mustered more than 100 locals and, with his own crew, put the pirates to flight.’
      • ‘If this is the case, then it was probably taken to Ireland by the monks of Iona when they were put to flight by invading Vikings at the beginning of the 9th century.’
      • ‘Pentheus, Pentheus, your army cannot prevail; your men will be put to flight.’
      • ‘A threat of immediate physical violence had put them to flight.’
    take flight
    • 1Take off and fly.

      ‘the ducks took flight’
      • ‘A duck took flight as I took a seat by Susanita's side, making a fluttering sound in its wake.’
      • ‘A large flock of birds took flight as the tree that Athrahn was hacking up, fell.’
      • ‘For instance, in the opening moments, a sinister flock of birds takes flight and a hearse-like limousine crosses the path of a fire truck backing out of a station.’
      • ‘This duck is strong and fast and, unlike many diving ducks, can take flight directly from the water without a running start.’
      • ‘The flocks on the old folk's home took flight and circled the street.’
      • ‘A flock of birds surges impetuously from the thickets and takes flight towards the windmills that decorate the landscape.’
      • ‘The dragon beats its wings and takes flight above the bodies.’
      • ‘She stares intensely at a scene, immersing herself in it fully, and suddenly she and the whole thing take flight.’
      • ‘It was on December 27, 1904, at the Duke of York's Theatre in London that JM Barrie's celebrated eternal boy first took flight.’
      • ‘He was a key player on the 19s that won the World Cup, and then he took flight, basically - two years later he was scoring three tries against the French in Paris.’
    • 2also take to flightFlee.

      ‘many Huguenots took flight from France’
      • ‘Did you not see that while fighting the Pathans, they took to flight which was deceptive.’
      • ‘Instantly, it took to flight, heading away from the man.’
      • ‘Pavli rushed from his bedroom and took to flight, landing on his mother's lap and forcing a surprised laugh.’
      • ‘After his short speech, he took to flight, hopping from the platform as he twisted towards the train.’
      • ‘The monster took to flight and fell backward, hitting the ground and rolling to his feet.’
      • ‘When the darkness closed around her Ayala lost all nerve and took to flight with a timid yelp.’
      • ‘Alexis prepared to take aim again, but before she could do so, the two men took flight, fleeing back the way they came.’
      • ‘Yelling with laughter, the rest of the spray cans were flung down and the whole gang took flight back to the park.’
      • ‘They took flight when they saw that their escape route was blocked after a neighbour had parked his car in a laneway where their own vehicle was parked.’
      • ‘He narrowly escaped an arrest warrant in the US by taking flight to Panama with the help of church contacts.’


Old English flyht ‘action or manner of flying’, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch vlucht and fly. This was probably merged in Middle English with an unrecorded Old English word related to German Flucht and to flee, which is represented by sense 3 of the noun.