noun \ˈskərj also ˈskōrj, ˈskrj, ˈskrj\

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

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

Full Definition of SCOURGE

:  whip; especially :  one used to inflict pain or punishment
:  an instrument of punishment or criticism
:  a cause of wide or great affliction

Examples of SCOURGE

  1. a city ravaged by the scourge of unemployment
  2. The disease continues to be a scourge in the developing world.

Origin 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

automatic, carbine, cudgel, muzzle, rapier


transitive verb

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

: to hit (someone) with a whip as punishment


Full Definition of SCOURGE

:  flog, whip
a :  to punish severely
b :  afflict
c :  to drive as if by blows of a whip
d :  chastise
scourg·er noun

Examples of SCOURGE

  1. a neighborhood scourged by crime
  2. The prisoner was scourged with a whip.

First Known Use of SCOURGE

14th century


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Previous Word in the Dictionary: scour (verb)
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