mid 16th century: of unknown origin
Flaunt and flout may sound similar but they have different meanings. Flaunt means ‘display ostentatiously’, as in visitors who liked to flaunt their wealth, while flout means ‘openly disregard a rule or convention’, as in new recruits growing their hair and flouting convention. It is a common error, recorded since around the 1940s, to use flaunt when flout is intended, as in the young woman had been flaunting the rules and regulations. In the Oxford English Corpus the second and third commonest objects of flaunt, after wealth, are law and rules.