bow and scrape

idiom
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of bow and scrape

: to treat someone who is powerful or wealthy in an extremely respectful way especially in order to get approval, friendship, etc.
  • She's disgusted by politicians who bow and scrape before wealthy contributors.

Word by Word Definitions

bow play
  1. : to cease from competition or resistance : submit, yield

  2. : to bend the head, body, or knee in reverence, submission, or shame

  3. : to incline the head or body in salutation or assent or to acknowledge applause

  1. : a bending of the head or body in respect, submission, assent, or salutation

  1. : something bent into a simple curve or arc

  2. : rainbow

  3. : a weapon that is used to propel an arrow and that is made of a strip of flexible material (such as wood) with a cord connecting the two ends and holding the strip bent

  1. : to bend into a curve

  2. : to play a stringed instrument with a bow (see 3bow 5a)

  3. : to cause to bend into a curve

  1. : the forward part of a ship

  2. : bowman:2

scrape play
  1. : to remove from a surface by usually repeated strokes of an edged instrument

  2. : to make (a surface) smooth or clean with strokes of an edged instrument or an abrasive

  3. : to grate harshly over or against

  1. : the act or process of scraping

  2. : a sound made by scraping

  3. : a mark or injury caused by scraping : abrasion


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