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pompous (person)


highfalutin = aufgeblasen, hochtrabend, abgehoben, hochgestochen --- GOOGLE INDEX highfalutin: approximately 300,000 Google hits



Don't be too HIGHFALUTIN about this: Not every company can save the world.

(Inc magazine)

I envisioned myself as the lone, rogue cowboy who didn’t need a HIGHFALUTIN diploma to prove myself.

(BusinessWeek magazine)

Did you


- trying to seem very important or serious, but without having a good reason for doing so and looking silly as a result

(Cambridge Dictionary)

This strange-sounding expression was coined in America in the 1800s, a time when tough men and cowboys were still settling the Wild West. Although the origin is unknown, the context of the expression derives from the idea of well-dressed "city slickers" from the east looking down their noses at the regular folk.

Just think about the countless western movies where a stagecoach arrives in a dusty town and out steps a man in a suit and tie, seeming or pretending to be important. That's what highfalutin means.

One theory regarding the origin is that "falutin" is a modification of "fluting," as in playing the flute, perhaps imitating the light and airy tone of speech used by some haughty rich people.

Another suggestion is that "falutin" relates to flying or flown, such as in elevated or exaggerated, being above others. The expression high-flown, for instance, means using fancy words that are meant to sound important and impressive.


arrogant, boastful, grandiose, high and mighty, inflated, lofty, ostentatious, overbearing, overblown, pompous, pretentious, puffy, swollen, turgid, uppity

SMUGGLE OWAD into today's conversation

"His highfalutin manner can be very annoying."

Thanks to Polina for suggesting today's word!

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