adjective \ˈskant\

: very small in size or amount

Full Definition of SCANT

a :  excessively frugal
b :  not prodigal :  chary
a :  barely or scarcely sufficient; especially :  not quite coming up to a stated measure <a scant teaspoon>
b :  lacking in amplitude or quantity <scant growth>
:  having a small or insufficient supply <he's fat, and scant of breath — Shakespeare>
scant·ly adverb
scant·ness noun

Examples of SCANT

  1. Food was in scant supply.
  2. She paid scant attention to the facts.
  3. Police found scant evidence of fraud.

Origin of SCANT

Middle English, from Old Norse skamt, neuter of skammr short
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of SCANT

meager, scanty, scant, skimpy, spare, sparse mean falling short of what is normal, necessary, or desirable. meager implies the absence of elements, qualities, or numbers necessary to a thing's richness, substance, or potency <a meager portion of meat>. scanty stresses insufficiency in amount, quantity, or extent <supplies too scanty to last the winter>. scant suggests a falling short of what is desired or desirable rather than of what is essential <in January the daylight hours are scant>. skimpy usually suggests niggardliness or penury as the cause of the deficiency <tacky housing developments on skimpy lots>. spare may suggest a slight falling short of adequacy or merely an absence of superfluity <a spare, concise style of writing>. sparse implies a thin scattering of units <a sparse population>.

Rhymes with SCANT



Definition of SCANT


First Known Use of SCANT

15th century


transitive verb

Definition of SCANT

:  to provide an incomplete supply of
:  to make small, narrow, or meager
:  to give scant attention to :  slight
:  to provide with a meager or inadequate portion or supply :  stint

Examples of SCANT

  1. <don't scant the peanut butter on those sandwiches!>

First Known Use of SCANT

circa 1580
SCANTNESS Defined for Kids


adjective \ˈskant\

Definition of SCANT for Kids

:  barely enough <Ramona paid scant attention to this little speech … — Beverly Cleary, Ramona Quimby>
:  not quite to a full amount, degree, or extent <He poured a scant cup of milk.>


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