Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

sclaff

play
intransitive verb \ˈsklaf\

Definition of sclaff

  1. :  to scrape the ground instead of hitting the ball cleanly on a golf stroke

sclaff noun
sclaffer noun


Did You Know?

There's no dearth of names for bad shots on the golf course. The duffer can dub, slice, hook, top, pull, push, sky, shank, or sclaff a shot. Sclaff is a word at home-albeit not warmly welcomed-on the Scottish links. In Scots, sclaff originally referred to a slap with the palm of the hand and was likely of onomatopoeic origin. The similarity of the painful resonance of a sclaff to the disheartening thud of a golf club striking the ground behind a ball did not go unnoticed by grimacing golfers on the fairway. By the 19th century's end, sclaff was being used as both a noun and verb for such a stroke.

Origin of sclaff

Scots, from sclaff, noun, literally, blow with the palm; probably of imitative origin


First Known Use: 1893


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up sclaff? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

immature or lacking adult sophistication

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image567572573

Which of these is a synonym of unctuous?

angry maudlin prompt oily
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ