itch

verb
\ ˈich How to pronounce itch (audio) \
itched; itching; itches

Definition of itch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to have an itch her arm itched
b : to produce an itchy sensation long underwear that itches
2 : to have a restless desire or hankering for something were itching to go outside

transitive verb

1 : to cause to itch
2 : vex, irritate

itch

noun
Definition of itch (Entry 2 of 2)
1a : an uneasy irritating sensation in the upper surface of the skin usually held to result from mild stimulation of pain receptors
b : a skin disorder accompanied by such a sensation especially : a contagious eruption caused by a mite (Sarcoptes scabiei) that burrows in the skin and causes intense itching
2a : a restless usually constant often compulsive desire an itch to travel

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Other Words from itch

Noun

itchiness \ ˈi-​chē-​nəs How to pronounce itch (audio) \ noun
itchy \ ˈi-​chē How to pronounce itch (audio) \ adjective

Examples of itch in a Sentence

Verb His eyes began to burn and itch because of his allergies. This sweater makes me itch. Noun I had a slight itch on my back. Scratching only makes the itch worse. She's always had an itch for adventure. He has an itch to travel.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Gonzales, a husband and father of six children, got the politics itch when he was dispatched to Capitol Hill from December 2016 to February 2018 as a Department of Defense legislative fellow for Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. Marisa Schultz, Fox News, "Rep.-elect Tony Gonzales helps GOP hold Texas border district: 'My story is the American dream'," 26 Nov. 2020 These clashes over vaccine transparency could play a growing role as supplies move from hospitals to private employers — and as people itch to resume their normal lives. Washington Post, "Algorithms are deciding who gets the first vaccines. Should we trust them?," 19 Dec. 2020 With masks and social distancing, retail nurseries are open year-round and are a fairly safe way to itch that garden scratch. oregonlive, "We miss gardening as fall turns to winter; here’s how to cope: The Pecks," 19 Nov. 2020 Again, thanks to the magic that is Merino, these don't itch. Natalie Krebs, Outdoor Life, "The Ultimate Hunting Gift Guide for Women," 18 Nov. 2020 In these cases, nerves in the skin become hyper-sensitive to itch, and perceive as itchy stimuli that are normally painful — or simply mechanical or thermal. Katherine Harmon Courage, Smithsonian Magazine, "The Search for What Causes Chronic Itching," 10 Nov. 2020 And basic nervous system malfunctions like a pinched or damaged nerve can generate pain in some people but itch in others. Katherine Harmon Courage, Smithsonian Magazine, "The Search for What Causes Chronic Itching," 10 Nov. 2020 Locals are starting to itch for new leadership and someone to take charge of countering the crime rocking the city, Ryner said. Audrey Conklin, Fox News, "Violent summer proves deciding factor for some Minnesota voters," 22 Oct. 2020 The buildup of skin cells creates scaly, patches that can itch, hurt, crust up and bleed. Mona Gohara, Good Housekeeping, "7 Scalp Conditions That Cause Bumps or Spots — And How to Treat Them," 27 Aug. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun But his charity's work in providing medication and millions of mosquito nets didn't satiate Gates' philanthropic itch. Joseph Simonson, Washington Examiner, "Bill Gates: from computer programmer to know-it-all," 18 Feb. 2021 The two graphics cards already announced in late 2020 were designed to scratch that itch. Brad Chacos, PCWorld, "Nvidia woos mainstream gamers with the $329 GeForce RTX 3060 and RTX 30-series laptops," 12 Jan. 2021 Getting the itch to just get away from your home and head out on the next adventure? Alison Medley, Chron, "Houston's Grand Tuscany Hotel offers an island oasis for family staycationers," 25 Jan. 2021 Educational simulations are a nice middle ground between movie and game, and virtual tourism satisfies the itch to look around and explore new environments. Eric Alt, Popular Science, "Best VR headsets: Bring your entertainment to life," 11 Jan. 2021 Marshawn Lynch apparently wants to scratch that NFL itch again. oregonlive, "Marshawn Lynch open to coming out of retirement for a third time," 11 Dec. 2020 To my dismay, the sequel, Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, the bash-fest Nintendo released in November, didn’t scratch my itch for sweeping, soothing landscapes and low-stakes puzzle solving during a year of high-stakes reality. Keema Waterfield, Wired, "The Legend of Zelda, 'Dinky,' and a Bridge to My Daughter," 19 Jan. 2021 For many, trading stocks started as a way to indulge their speculative itch when other avenues, such as sports gambling, were effectively shuttered. New York Times, "Market Edges Toward Euphoria, Despite Pandemic’s Toll," 27 Dec. 2020 Not too long after posting, Kerry Washington chimed in supporting Teigen’s itch to get a nose piercing. Sarah Midkiff, refinery29.com, "Chrissy Teigen Is Bringing Back The Nose Stud In 2021," 4 Jan. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'itch.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of itch

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for itch

Verb

Middle English icchen, from Old English giccan; akin to Old High German jucchen to itch

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Time Traveler for itch Time Traveler

The first known use of itch was before the 12th century

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Statistics for itch

Last Updated

3 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Itch.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/itch. Accessed 8 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for itch

itch

verb

English Language Learners Definition of itch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to have or produce an unpleasant feeling on your skin or inside your mouth, nose, etc. that makes you want to scratch
informal : to have a strong desire to do something or for something

itch

noun

English Language Learners Definition of itch (Entry 2 of 2)

: an uncomfortable or unpleasant feeling on your skin or inside your mouth, nose, etc., that makes you want to scratch
somewhat informal : a constant and strong desire for something or to do something

itch

verb
\ ˈich How to pronounce itch (audio) \
itched; itching

Kids Definition of itch

 (Entry 1 of 2)
1 : to have or produce an unpleasant feeling that causes a desire to scratch My nose itches.
2 : to have a strong desire The kids at my school are ALWAYS itching to see a fight.— Jeff Kinney, Wimpy Kid

itch

noun
Kids Definition of itch (Entry 2 of 2)
1 : an unpleasant feeling that causes a desire to scratch
2 : a skin disorder in which an itch is present
3 : a restless usually constant desire an itch to travel

itch

noun
\ ˈich How to pronounce itch (audio) \

Medical Definition of itch

1 : an uneasy irritating sensation in the upper surface of the skin usually held to result from mild stimulation of pain receptors
2 : a skin disorder accompanied by an itch especially : a contagious eruption caused by an itch mite of the genus Sarcoptes (S. scabiei) that burrows in the skin and causes intense itching

Other Words from itch

itch verb
itchiness \ ˈich-​ē-​nəs How to pronounce itch (audio) \ noun
itchy \ -​ē How to pronounce itch (audio) \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on itch

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for itch

Nglish: Translation of itch for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of itch for Arabic Speakers

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