- A historical region of northwest Europe including parts of northern France, western Belgium, and southwest Netherlands along the North Sea. For many centuries it enjoyed virtual independence and great prosperity as a center of the cloth industry. The Habsburg wars in the Low Countries caused the eventual division of the region, which suffered heavy damage during World War I and World War II.
- A Dutch-speaking region of northern Belgium. It was granted limited autonomy in 1980.
- (historical) The Countship of Flanders, of varying extent.
- A subnational state in the north of federal Belgium, the institutional merger of a territorial region and the Dutch language 'community' which also has/shares some authority in the capital region Brussels.
- Two provinces in Belgian Flanders: (West-Flanders and East-Flanders).
- Short for French Flanders, a former province of the French kingdom on territory taken from the above countship, now constituting the French department Nord.
- The principal railway station in Lille, capital of the above.
From French Flandres, from Dutch Vlaanderen (pl.), from Middle Dutch Vlander, from Old Frisian, from Proto-Germanic *flaumdra ‘waterlogged land’, from *flaumaz ‘flowing, current (water)’ (compare Old High German weraltfloum (“transitoriness of life”), Old Norse flaumr (“eddy”)), from Proto-Indo-European *plow-m- ‘flow’ (compare Ancient Greek plŷma (“dishwater, washing water”)). More at flow. "Waterlogged" refers to the mudflats and salt marshes common to coastal Flanders.