How did flappers get their name? – Red Flapper Dress With Fringe Kids Coat

November 5, 2020 0 Comments

It was an English poet by the name of Thomas Wyatt who, back in the 17th century, decided to start a phrase, “A flapper is a lover of flutes.” That is the origin of it.

What was it that really began it?

A man named Gresham Allen. He lived in England and he was a flapper, and he loved to play flutes. And his wife came up with the idea that you call somebody flapper because he loves to play flutes. And so that’s where the name came from.

What did it mean to get the name?

Gresham loved the flappers, and so did a lot of people back then. People would flounce around and sing about them and they used to have their own street, the street where they flapped. So Gresham got the name. They did give all that to their name, Flapper.

And then where did it come from?

Gresham himself had a flapper named Flaunt. It’s an original American pronunciation. There’s also the French ‘flauter’. [French for “player,” from the name for them—flauters]

Was it an original word for flapper?

Not entirely. The British invented it because of the way they spoke. They were called flappers because they liked to flutter around about. The British called them “flies” because they were so beautiful.

Why did it stay with the word?

There’s a tradition back from George Washington’s time, when Washington and Jefferson talked about people flying and they said they got the name from them.

Where did you see it first, on TV, or film?

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It first really showed up on film when the film Flyboys was made. Flappers really started on Broadway in the 1920’s. But it really started to rise in popularity in the 1930’s and 1940’s because of a series of movies by the French writer Jean Renoir called The Ballad of Flapper Joe. Flappers came out of that and started to be a bigger star than the French film.

And your own work?

Flappers is a pretty big part of my life now. The character I play, I was born in Flappers, Georgia. So my grandfather and my mother were both flappers, although my mother flapped around a lot. And I’m actually a big admirer of Jean Renoir.

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