What’s a flâneur?

flâ-neur (flä-nûr’) n. 1. From the French verb flâner which means to stroll; a term popularized by Charles Baudelaire and other less well-remembered French writers of the 19th century; “A gentleman stroller of city streets.” 2. An aimless wanderer. 3. Someone whose mind and senses are only stimulated by improvised rambles around the world.


  1. Anne MacIntyre’s avatar

    And a finer flâneur there never was. . .I’ve forwarded this on to my 17-year old son, who just returned from his first trip to the Continent. He came back full of plans for being – well, a flâneur. Only he didn’t know the word for it. Now he does. Thanks.

  2. Rudolf Waldner’s avatar

    Cool word, might be heisting it in the very near future. :)

  3. elena pittau’s avatar

    gentili tutti,
    that has been my inspiration word in starting my S&S Italian school in 2003 in Alghero, Sardinia
    Thx god the world is animated with flâneurs!

  4. RG’s avatar

    Hello David Lansing,

    I got here because I was looking for information on Niue, through a very indirect route.

    The three pieces, Last call on Niue, Swimming with Annie and the dolphins, and Warm rain barbecue, impressed me greatly. So much so I wanted to let you know. First, I looked at the “About” page.

    Even with your background, I still want to tell you how impressed I was by those pieces. They are not just great writing, they are very human, of enduring interest in and of themselves. I hope they make it into a small volume some day, so that they are available years from now for some other person who has had enough experience with life to appreciate meeting another who could speak to him from the past and make him feel the distance between the two of you is very short.

    I envy your opportunity for travel, as well.

    Thanks for posting these.


  5. john s flannery’s avatar

    Guess I’m a happy wanderer with my name, Flannery, and French ancestry along with the obvious Irish.

    Glad you’ve done some stuff with my amigo Iain Douglas Hamilton. He and Oria are great, valuable, world citizens and I miss contact with them and the other goodwildlife-riented folks I worked with and had good times with in that part of this weird world.

    You mention Virgina and Robert Ruark, so guess we have followed some of the same trails over the years.

    Cheers from Truth or Consequances, New Mexico.
    john s flannery

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