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Look at the picture above, we have the flap of the envelope. We need to put a letter in the envelope, some glue on the flap, bend it down and stick it to the envelope.

Normally, we need to glue the flap if we send the envelope by post. However, in some situations, we don't need to glue the flap and we just bend the flap down if we give the envelope directly to someone by hand not by post.

If I "tuck the flap in", the flap will be inside the envelope. But I don't want that as I just want the flap to be bent down. It may stick out a bit because it is not glued, but that is ok.

Is it correct to say "you just need to tuck the flap of the envelope down and send it to your boss"?

I am not sure "tuck the flap down" is correct?

  • 3
    "Tuck the flap down," as you said, implies placing the flap inside the envelope. It would be clearer to merely say, "fold the flap down."
    – BreWoodsy
    Commented Jan 1, 2022 at 17:05
  • @BreWoodsy, but I don't want the flap to be inside the envelope. I want it outside. Do we still say "Tuck the flap down" when the flap is still outside the envelope?
    – Tom
    Commented Jan 1, 2022 at 17:12
  • Yes, that is correct. At least in American English, "tuck the flap down" would imply that the flap is still outside of the envelope.
    – BreWoodsy
    Commented Jan 1, 2022 at 17:25
  • 4
    For me (UK English) "tuck the flap down" does not make sense. "Fold the flap down" or "Tuck the flap in" are the usual forms, although the latter is not the wanted sense. Generally "tuck" indicates inserting within or between things.
    – AdrianHHH
    Commented Jan 1, 2022 at 17:41

1 Answer 1


"Tuck [it] down" doesn't make sense. Either you want to tuck it in, or you want to fold it down.

But, to be honest, it doesn't matter if it is tucked in. Only the most paranoid micromanager would care. What is important is that the envelope isn't sealed (so it can be reused, I suppose).

For internal mail, don't bother to seal the envelope.

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