Definition of flathead in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈflathed/


1 (Flathead) A member of certain North American Indian peoples such as the Chinook, Choctaw, and Salish, named from their supposed practice of flattening their children’s heads artificially.
Example sentences
  • By the mid-nineteenth century, they had pushed their enemies, particularly the Shoshone, Flathead, and Kootenai, west across the Rocky Mountains.
  • In 1875 destitute bands of Flatheads and Pend d' Oreilles were pressing into Blackfeet territory.
  • Flathead chief Victor refused to move his band from the Bitterroot Valley, the ancestral homeland of the Flatheads.
1.1US The Salishan language spoken by those people.
2 informal A foolish person.
3An edible tropical marine fish that has a pointed flattened head with the eyes positioned on the top, typically burrowing in the seabed with just the eyes showing.
  • Family Platycephalidae: several genera and species.
Example sentences
  • Squid, cuttlefish, boxfish, stingrays and flatheads can be found among the rocky sections.
  • The odd flathead with juvenile bream are being caught in the rivers.
  • In this area, commercial fishermen will not be able to target recreational species such as whiting, bream, flathead and mulloway.
4US (Of an engine) having the valves and spark plugs in the cylinder block rather than the cylinder head, which is essentially a flat plate.
Example sentences
  • I have a '50 Ford pickup with a blown flathead in it.
  • It had the doors welded shut and the roof cut off, and it was powered by a stock flathead.
4.1(Of a vehicle) having a flathead engine.
5 [as modifier] US (Of a screw) countersunk.
Example sentences
  • The unit has a base stand attached to it that can be removed via a single flathead screw.
  • To clean the wheels, grab a small flathead screw driver (the real small ones) and chisel the dirt off.
  • With a small flathead screwdriver, gently pry the drive free.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: flat·head

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