Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

scourge

play
noun \ˈskərj also ˈskōrj, ˈskȯrj, ˈsku̇rj\

Simple Definition of scourge

  • : someone or something that causes a great amount of trouble or suffering

  • : a whip that was used to punish people in the past

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of scourge

  1. 1 :  whip; especially :  one used to inflict pain or punishment

  2. 2 :  an instrument of punishment or criticism

  3. 3 :  a cause of wide or great affliction

Examples of scourge in a sentence

  1. a city ravaged by the scourge of unemployment

  2. The disease continues to be a scourge in the developing world.



Origin and Etymology of scourge

Middle English, from Anglo-French escorge, from escorger to whip, from Vulgar Latin *excorrigiare, from Latin ex- + corrigia thong, whip


First Known Use: 13th century

Other Weapons and Explosives Terms


2

scourge

transitive verb

Simple Definition of scourge

  • : to cause a lot of trouble or suffering for (someone or something)

  • : to hit (someone) with a whip as punishment

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of scourge

scourged

scourging

  1. 1 :  flog, whip

  2. 2a :  to punish severelyb :  afflictc :  to drive as if by blows of a whipd :  chastise

scourger

noun

Examples of scourge in a sentence

  1. a neighborhood scourged by crime

  2. The prisoner was scourged with a whip.



14th Century

First Known Use of scourge

14th century


SCOURGE Defined for Kids

1

scourge

play
noun \ˈskərj\

Definition of scourge for Students

  1. 1 :  a cause of widespread or great suffering <The disease is a scourge in rural areas.>

  2. 2 :  2whip 1




2

scourge

play
verb

Definition of scourge for Students

scourged

scourging

  1. 1 :  to cause trouble or suffering to :  afflict <Crime scourges the neighborhood.>

  2. 2 :  to whip severely :  flog





Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

prophetic or oracular

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

confounded-person

Which is a synonym of indolent?

lazy philistine melancholy frenetic
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