What does scarce mean?

Definitions for scarce

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word scarce.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. scarceadverb

    deficient in quantity or number compared with the demand

    "fresh vegetables were scarce during the drought"

  2. barely, hardly, just, scarcely, scarceadverb

    only a very short time before

    "they could barely hear the speaker"; "we hardly knew them"; "just missed being hit"; "had scarcely rung the bell when the door flew open"; "would have scarce arrived before she would have found some excuse to leave"- W.B.Yeats


  1. scarceadverb

    Scarcely, only just.

  2. scarceadjective

    Uncommon, rare; difficult to find; insufficient to meet a demand.

  3. Etymology: From Northern scars, escars (> French échars), from *, probably originally a participle form of *, from ex- + carpere.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. SCARCEadjective

    Etymology: scarso, Italian; schaers, Dutch.

    A Swede will no more sell you his hemp for less silver, because you tell him silver is scarcer now in England, and therefore risen one fifth in value, than a tradesman of London will sell his commodity cheaper to the Isle of Man, because money is scarce there. John Locke.

    The scarcest of all is a Pescennius Niger on a medallion well preserved. Addison.

  2. Scarce, Scarcelyadverb

    Etymology: from the adjective.

    A thing which we so little hoped to see, that even they which beheld it done scarcely believed their own senses. Richard Hooker.

    When we our betters see bearing our woes,
    We scarcely think our miseries our foes. William Shakespeare, King Lear.

    Age, which unavoidably is but one remove from death, and consequently should have nothing about it but what looks like a decent preparation for it, scarce ever appears, of late days, but in the high mode, the flaunting garb, and utmost gaudery of youth. South.

    You neither have enemies, nor can scarce have any. Dryd.

    He scarcely knew him, striving to disown
    His blotted form, and blushing to be known. Dryden.

    Slowly he fails, and scarcely stems the tides;
    The pressing water pours within her sides. Dryden.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Scarce

    not plentiful or abundant; in small quantity in proportion to the demand; not easily to be procured; rare; uncommon

  2. Scarce

    scantily supplied (with); deficient (in); -- with of

  3. Scarce

    sparing; frugal; parsimonious; stingy

  4. Scarceadverb

    alt. of Scarcely


  1. Scarce

    Scarce is an Alternative rock band formed in Rhode Island, New York, USA. They were active from 1993 to 1997, and reformed in 2008.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Scarce

    skārs, adj. not plentiful: not equal to the demand: rare: not common: parsimonious: deficient: short: scanty.—adj. Scarce′-beard′ed (Shak.), having a scanty beard.—adv. Scarce′ly, Scarce (B.), hardly, barely.—ns. Scarce′ment (archit.), a plain set-off or projection in a wall; Scarce′ness; Scarc′ity, state of being scarce: deficiency: rareness: niggardliness: want: famine.—Make one's self scarce, to decamp. [O. Fr. escars (Fr. échars), niggardly—Low L. scarpsus=ex-carpsus, for L. excerptus, pa.p. of excerpēreex, out of, carpēre, to pick.]

How to pronounce scarce?

How to say scarce in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of scarce in Chaldean Numerology is: 8

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of scarce in Pythagorean Numerology is: 4

Examples of scarce in a Sentence

  1. Robert Cohen:

    The gold price is good, but capital flows, while probably better than last year, are still very scarce, mergers and weak management teams have destroyed capital. Investors have become a bit more cautious in their approach.

  2. Alexandra Richey:

    In a water-scarce society, we can no longer tolerate this level of uncertainty, especially since groundwater is disappearing so rapidly.

  3. Richard Gorry:

    In the longer-term, it's not really a question of oversupply. Oil is still a scarce resource, outside the U.S., we haven't seen supply rising by much, so in the longer term the Iranian oil will actually be needed to keep the market balanced.

  4. Michael Ison:

    No one has a sense of where there's excess and where there's deficiencies, this is a national limited, scarce resource. There needs to be some process to this.

  5. Andrea Canaan:

    It's as if we think liberation a fixed quantity, that there is only so much to go around. That an individual or community is liberated at the expense of another When we view liberation as a scarce resource, something only a precious few of us can have, we stifle our potential, our creativity, our genius for living, learning and growing.

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    in or of the month preceding the present one
    • A. ultimo
    • B. appellative
    • C. eloquent
    • D. ectomorphic

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