What does scratch mean?

Definitions for scratch

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

Princeton's WordNet

  1. abrasion, scratch, scrape, excoriationnoun

    an abraded area where the skin is torn or worn off

  2. incision, scratch, prick, slit, dentnoun

    a depression scratched or carved into a surface

  3. boodle, bread, cabbage, clams, dinero, dough, gelt, kale, lettuce, lolly, lucre, loot, moolah, pelf, scratch, shekels, simoleons, sugar, wampumnoun

    informal terms for money

  4. scratchnoun

    a competitor who has withdrawn from competition

  5. start, starting line, scratch, scratch linenoun

    a line indicating the location of the start of a race or a game

  6. chicken feed, scratchnoun

    dry mash for poultry

  7. scrape, scraping, scratch, scratchingnoun

    a harsh noise made by scraping

    "the scrape of violin bows distracted her"

  8. scribble, scratch, scrawl, cacographynoun

    poor handwriting

  9. scratchnoun

    (golf) a handicap of zero strokes

    "a golfer who plays at scratch should be able to achieve par on a course"

  10. scratch, scrape, scar, markverb

    an indication of damage

  11. rub, fray, fret, chafe, scratchverb

    cause friction

    "my sweater scratches"

  12. scratch, scrape, scratch upverb

    cut the surface of; wear away the surface of

  13. rub, scratch, itchverb

    scrape or rub as if to relieve itching

    "Don't scratch your insect bites!"

  14. cancel, call off, scratch, scrubverb

    postpone indefinitely or annul something that was scheduled

    "Call off the engagement"; "cancel the dinner party"; "we had to scrub our vacation plans"; "scratch that meeting--the chair is ill"

  15. strike, scratch, expunge, exciseverb

    remove by erasing or crossing out or as if by drawing a line

    "Please strike this remark from the record"; "scratch that remark"

  16. scrape, scrape up, scratch, come upverb

    gather (money or other resources) together over time

    "She had scraped together enough money for college"; "they scratched a meager living"

  17. scratch, engrave, grave, inscribeverb

    carve, cut, or etch into a material or surface

    "engrave a pen"; "engraved the trophy cupt with the winner's"; "the lovers scratched their names into the bark of the tree"


  1. Scratchnoun

    a shot which results in a penalty, such as dropping the cue ball in a pocket without hitting another ball.


  1. scratchnoun

    A disruption, mark or shallow cut on a surface made by scratching.

  2. scratchnoun

    An act of scratching the skin to alleviate an itch or irritation.

    The dog sat up and had a good scratch.

  3. scratchnoun

    A starting line (originally and simply, a line scratched in the ground).

  4. scratchnoun

    A foul in pool, as where the cue ball is put into a pocket or jumps off the table.

  5. scratchnoun


  6. scratchnoun

    A technical error of touching or surpassing the starting mark prior to the official start signal in the sporting events of long jump, discus, hammer throw, shot put, and similar. Originally the starting mark was a scratch on the ground but is now a board or precisely indicated mark.

  7. scratchnoun

    A feed, usually a mixture of a few common grains, given to chickens.

  8. scratchverb

    To rub a surface with a sharp object, especially by a living creature to remove itching with nails, claws, etc.

    Could you please scratch my back?

  9. scratchverb

    To rub the skin with rough material causing a sensation of irritation.

    I don't like that new scarf because it scratches my neck.

  10. scratchverb

    To mark a surface with a sharp object, thereby leaving a scratch (noun).

    A real diamond can easily scratch a pane of glass.

  11. scratchverb

    To remove, ignore or delete.

  12. scratchverb

    To produce a distinctive sound on a turntable by moving a vinyl record back and forth while manipulating the crossfader (see also scratching).

  13. scratchverb

    To commit a foul in pool, as where the cue ball is put into a pocket or jumps off the table.

    Embarrassingly, he scratched on the break, popping the cue completely off the table.

  14. scratchadjective

    For or consisting of preliminary or tentative, incomplete, etc. work.

    This is scratch paper, so go ahead and scribble whatever you want on it.

  15. scratchadjective

    Hastily assembled; put together in a hurry or from disparate elements.

  16. scratchadjective

    Relating to a data structure or recording medium attached to a machine for testing or temporary use.

  17. scratchadjective

    Constructed from whatever materials are to hand.

  18. scratchadjective

    (of a player) Of a standard high enough to play without a handicap, i.e. to compete without the benefit of a variation in scoring based on ability.

  19. Etymology: Probably from a blend of the words scratten and crachen.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Scratchnoun

    Etymology: from the verb.

    The coarse file cuts deep, and makes deep scratches in the work; and before you can take out those deep scratches with your finer cut files, those places where the risings were when your work was forged, may become dents to your hammer dents. Joseph Moxon, Mech. Exer.

    The smaller the particles of those substances are, the smaller will be the scratches, by which they continually fret and wear away the glass until it be polished; but be they never so small, they can wear away the glass no otherwise than by grating and scratching it, and breaking the protuberances: and therefore polish it no otherwise than by bringing its roughness to a very fine grain, so that the scratches and frettings of the surface become too small to become visible. Isaac Newton, Opt.

    These nails with scratches shall deform my breast,
    Lest by my look or colour be express’d
    The mark of aught high-born, or ever better dress’d. Matthew Prior.

    The valiant beast turning on her with open jaws, she gave him such a thrust through his breast, that all the lion could do was with his open paw to tear off the mantle and sleeve of Zelmane, with a little scratch rather than a wound. Philip Sidney.

    Heav’n forbid a shallow scratch should drive
    The prince of Wales from such a field as this. William Shakespeare, H. IV.

  2. To SCRATCHverb

    Etymology: kratzen, Dutch.

    The lab’ring swain
    Scratch’d with a rake a furrow for his grain,
    And cover’d with his hand the shallow seed again. Dryden.

    A sort of small sand-coloured stones, so hard as to scratch glass. Nehemiah Grew, Musæum.

    How can I tell but that his talons may
    Yet scratch my son, or rend his tender hand. Fa. Queen.

    I should have scratch’d out your unseeing eyes,
    To make my master out of love with thee. William Shakespeare.

    I had rather hear my dog bark at a crow, than a man swear he loves me. ———— Keep your ladyship still in that mind! so some gentleman or other shall ’scape a predestinate scratcht face. ———— Scratching could not make it worse, an ’twere such a face as yours were. William Shakespeare, Much Ado about Nothing.

    Scots are like witches: do but whet your pen,
    Scratch ’till the blood come, they’ll not hurt you then. John Cleveland.

    To wish that there were nothing but such dull tame things in the world, that will neither bite nor scratch, is as childless as to wish there were no fire in nature. More.

    Unhand me, or I’ll scratch your face;
    Let go, for shame. Dryden.

    Daphne, roaming through a thorny wood,
    Scratching her legs, that one shall swear she bleeds. William Shakespeare.

    Francis Cornfield did scratch his elbow, when he had sweetly invented to signify his name St. Francis, with a friary cowl in a corn field. William Camden.

    Other mechanical helps Aretæus uses to procure sleep, particularly the scratching of the temples and the ears. Arbuthnot.

    Be mindful, when invention fails,
    To scratch your head, and bite your nails. Jonathan Swift.

    If any of their labourers can scratch out a pamphlet, they desire no wit, style, or argument. Jonathan Swift.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Scratchverb

    to rub and tear or mark the surface of with something sharp or ragged; to scrape, roughen, or wound slightly by drawing something pointed or rough across, as the claws, the nails, a pin, or the like

  2. Scratchverb

    to write or draw hastily or awkwardly

  3. Scratchverb

    to cancel by drawing one or more lines through, as the name of a candidate upon a ballot, or of a horse in a list; hence, to erase; to efface; -- often with out

  4. Scratchverb

    to dig or excavate with the claws; as, some animals scratch holes, in which they burrow

  5. Scratchverb

    to use the claws or nails in tearing or in digging; to make scratches

  6. Scratchverb

    to score, not by skillful play but by some fortunate chance of the game

  7. Scratchnoun

    a break in the surface of a thing made by scratching, or by rubbing with anything pointed or rough; a slight wound, mark, furrow, or incision

  8. Scratchnoun

    a line across the prize ring; up to which boxers are brought when they join fight; hence, test, trial, or proof of courage; as, to bring to the scratch; to come up to the scratch

  9. Scratchnoun

    minute, but tender and troublesome, excoriations, covered with scabs, upon the heels of horses which have been used where it is very wet or muddy

  10. Scratchnoun

    a kind of wig covering only a portion of the head

  11. Scratchnoun

    a shot which scores by chance and not as intended by the player; a fluke

  12. Scratchadjective

    made, done, or happening by chance; arranged with little or no preparation; determined by circumstances; haphazard; as, a scratch team; a scratch crew for a boat race; a scratch shot in billiards

  13. Etymology: [OE. cracchen (perhaps influenced by OE. scratten to scratch); cf. OHG. chrazzn, G. kratzen, OD. kratsen, kretsen, D. krassen, Sw. kratsa to scrape, kratta to rake, to scratch, Dan. kradse to scratch, to scrape, Icel. krota to engrave. Cf. Grate to rub.]


  1. Scratch

    Scratch was a magazine about the art of creating hip-hop. It featured articles regarding producers, musicians and DJs that make beats for rap records, and details the secret methods, stories, partnerships, philosophies and equipment behind the music. The magazine's tagline was "The Blueprint of Hip-Hop". Scratch was owned by Harris Publications, the same company that publishes the popular hip-hop magazine XXL, as well as King, Rides and Slam. It debuted in January 2004, and was published bi-monthly. Various hip-hop producers, DJs and rappers have graced their cover, including Dr. Dre, The Neptunes, RZA, Lil Jon, Kanye West, DJ Drama, Timbaland, Jermaine Dupri, Mannie Fresh, Just Blaze and Eminem. Starting with its March–April 2007 issue, Scratch was relaunched as XXL Presents Scratch. It then operated under the wing of XXL Magazine, with XXL's former Senior Editor, Online, Brendan Frederick, acting as the new editor-in-chief and XXL's current editor-in-chief, Elliott Wilson, overseeing the magazine as the editorial director. It was announced that the Nov–Dec 2007 issue of Scratch would be the final issue of the magazine. Harris Publications folded the magazine for unknown reasons. A Scratch blog can now be found on XXL's website, XXLMAG.COM.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Scratch

    skrach, v.t. to mark the surface with something pointed, as the nails: to tear or to dig with the claws: to write hurriedly: to erase.—v.i. to use the claws in tearing or digging: to delete a name on a voting-paper.—n. a mark or tear made by scratching: a slight wound: the line in a prize-ring up to which boxers are led—hence test, trial, as in 'to come up to the scratch:' (pl.) a disease in horses: the time of starting of a player: in billiards, a chance stroke which is successful: a kind of wig, a scratch-wig: a scrawl.—adj. taken at random, as a 'scratch crew:' without handicap, or allowance of time or distance.—ns. Scratch′-back, a kind of toy, which, when drawn over a person's back, makes a sound as if his coat was torn; Scratch′-brush, a name given to various forms of brushes; Scratch′-coat, the first coat of plaster; Scratch′er, a bird which scratches for food.—adv. Scratch′ingly.—n.pl. Scratch′ings, refuse matter strained out of fat when melted.—ns. Scratch′-weed, the goose-grass; Scratch′-wig, a wig that covers only part of the head; Scratch′-work, a kind of wall decoration.—adj. Scratch′y, ragged: scratching: of little depth.—Scratch out, to erase. [Explained by Skeat as due to the confusion of M. E. skratten, to scratch, with M. E. cracchen, to scratch: skratten standing for skarten, an extended form from Ice. sker-a, to shear; cracchen, again, stands for kratsen—Sw. kratsa, to scrape.]

The New Hacker's Dictionary

  1. scratch

    1. [from scratchpad] adj. Describes a data structure or recording medium attached to a machine for testing or temporary-use purposes; one that can be scribbled on without loss. Usually in the combining forms scratch memory, scratch register, scratch disk, scratch tape, scratch volume. See also scratch monkey. 2. [primarily IBM, also Commodore] vt. To delete (as in a file).

Rap Dictionary

  1. scratchnoun

    Money, loot. "All about my scratch, artillery, fire arms and gats and shit" -- E-40 (Federal, 1993). loot= money

Suggested Resources

  1. scratch

    Song lyrics by scratch -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by scratch on the Lyrics.com website.

British National Corpus

  1. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'scratch' in Verbs Frequency: #992

How to pronounce scratch?

How to say scratch in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of scratch in Chaldean Numerology is: 3

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of scratch in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Examples of scratch in a Sentence

  1. Rosie Seelaus:

    If this were fitting well we could use the same mold and just replace the silicone, but since it's not fitting well, we're going to be starting from scratch and redesigning ... Tomorrow will be mostly sculpting his ear.

  2. Michael Silverton:

    We started building out our leveraged finance business six years ago from scratch, and it took us some time to build the relationships, in addition to our core advisory expertise, we have been working with clients across DCM, ECM and our principal transactions team, which has helped to solidify these relationships.

  3. Ifeoma Ozoma:

    As a Black woman, seeing @Pinterest's middle of the night 'Black employees matter' statement made me scratch my head after I just fought for over a full year to be paid and leveled fairly….

  4. Kamala Harris:

    In many ways, we're starting from scratch on something that's been raging for almost an entire year.

  5. Al Joersz:

    You figured out a way to do it by turning your head and the helmet and using the mic to scratch your nose.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for scratch

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • خربش, خدشArabic
  • esgarrapar, gratar, arpejar, rascarCatalan, Valencian
  • škrábanec, škrábatCzech
  • crafuWelsh
  • ridseDanish
  • kratzen, zerkratzen, Kratzer, verkratzenGerman
  • σβήνω, γρατζουνιά, χαράσσω, ξύνωGreek
  • arañar, raspar, arañazo, rascar, rasguñarSpanish
  • kratsima, kriimustama, sügamaEstonian
  • خراشPersian
  • naarmu, raapia, viiru, kynsiä, raha, rapsuttaaFinnish
  • rayer, thune, biffer, pognon, égratignure, griffer, flouze, rayure, égratigner, blé, oublier, grisbi, gratterFrench
  • tochais, scríobIrish
  • sgrìobadhScottish Gaelic
  • rañar, rascar, cozarGalician
  • karcol, karmol, vakar, megkarcol, megvakarHungarian
  • քորել, ճանկռել, քերծելArmenian
  • obliterare, graffio, graffiare, raspare, grattare, malloppoItalian
  • 引っ掻くJapanese
  • გაკაწვრა, ფხაჭნა, კაწვრაGeorgian
  • 긁다, 할퀴다Korean
  • scalpō, scaboLatin
  • खाजवणेMarathi
  • ကုတ်Burmese
  • krassen, krabbenDutch
  • rispNorwegian
  • rysa, skrobać, drapać, zadrapaniePolish
  • raspar, riscar, arranhar, apagar, coçar, rascar, arranhãoPortuguese
  • hasp'iy, hallp'iyQuechua
  • sgriffel, sgrifflar, sgrattarRomansh
  • zgâria, scărpinaRomanian
  • поцарапать, почесать, царапать, шкрябать, царапина, чесать, бабкиRussian
  • škrabaťSlovak
  • repa, klösaSwedish
  • kaşındırmak, çizmek, kaşımakTurkish
  • шкрябатиUkrainian
  • vết trầyVietnamese

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    be present at (meetings, church services, university), etc.
    • A. emerge
    • B. conform
    • C. moan
    • D. attend

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