scant

adjective
\ ˈskant How to pronounce scant (audio) \

Definition of scant

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 dialect

a : excessively frugal
b : not prodigal : chary
2a : barely or scarcely sufficient especially : not quite coming up to a stated measure a scant teaspoon
b : lacking in amplitude or quantity scant growth
3 : having a small or insufficient supply he's fat, and scant of breath— William Shakespeare

scant

adverb

Definition of scant (Entry 2 of 3)

dialect

scant

verb
scanted; scanting; scants

Definition of scant (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to provide an incomplete supply of
2 : to make small, narrow, or meager
3 : to give scant attention to : slight
4 : to provide with a meager or inadequate portion or supply : stint

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from scant

Adjective

scantly adverb
scantness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for scant

Adjective

meager, scanty, scant, skimpy, spare, sparse mean falling short of what is normal, necessary, or desirable. meager implies the absence of elements, qualities, or numbers necessary to a thing's richness, substance, or potency. a meager portion of meat scanty stresses insufficiency in amount, quantity, or extent. supplies too scanty to last the winter scant suggests a falling short of what is desired or desirable rather than of what is essential. in January the daylight hours are scant skimpy usually suggests niggardliness or penury as the cause of the deficiency. tacky housing developments on skimpy lots spare may suggest a slight falling short of adequacy or merely an absence of superfluity. a spare, concise style of writing sparse implies a thin scattering of units. a sparse population

Examples of scant in a Sentence

Adjective

Food was in scant supply. She paid scant attention to the facts. Police found scant evidence of fraud.

Verb

don't scant the peanut butter on those sandwiches!
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

So far details have remained scant, but with Tommy's new political position, the Peaky Blinders will likely be facing down a different kind of enemy on a whole new scale this season. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "Peaky Blinders Season 5: Everything We Know So Far," 7 Apr. 2019 Drop 4 large spoonfuls batter (about scant ¼ cup each) into pan, flatten slightly, and cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes per side; transfer to plates. Woman's Day Kitchen, Woman's Day, "Pea Fritters with Shrimp Salad," 7 Mar. 2019 There's scant data on whether CBD is any good for most medical conditions, because of federal limitations on marijuana research. Andy Marso, kansascity, "Cannabis extract CBD now legal in Kansas — with one big caveat," 6 June 2018 In 1979, McCain met Cindy, who would become his second wife a scant six weeks after his divorce from Carol was finalized. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "How John McCain's Children Were Shaped by His Political Career," 27 Aug. 2018 That has proved a daunting task, and Mr. Kenyatta provided scant details for achieving it beyond saying Kenya would invest more resources in strengthening its security and justice systems. Nicholas Bariyo, WSJ, "Group Behind Nairobi Attack Has Eluded Military," 19 Jan. 2019 Grimshaw Architects, which has a large portfolio of airport design work—including terminals in Istanbul and Melbourne, Australia—has been selected to design the edifice, but details are still scant. Barbara Peterson, Condé Nast Traveler, "New York's Airports Are Getting Billion-Dollar Makeovers—But What Will They Actually Change?," 21 Nov. 2018 Hospitals have scant supplies, many ambulances are grounded and food and water are among goods that have disappeared in a country suffering from inflation estimated by the International Monetary Fund to reach 1 million percent this year. Fabiola Sanchez And Scott Smith, Fox News, "Little damage reported from strong quake in Venezuela," 22 Aug. 2018 Hospitals have scant supplies, many ambulances are grounded and food and water are among goods that have disappeared in a country suffering from inflation estimated by the International Monetary Fund to reach 1 million percent this year. Scott Smith, The Seattle Times, "Strong quake rocks Venezuela but little damage reported," 21 Aug. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Yet, in his close attention to what the men inside the White House thought and did, Zeitz scants the larger reasons for their success and eventual downfall. Michael Kazin, The New Republic, "Realistic Ambitions," 27 Feb. 2018 Hospitals and heroic interventions got the large investments; incrementalists were scanted. Atul Gawande, The New Yorker, "The Heroism of Incremental Care," 23 Jan. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of scant

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adverb

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

circa 1580, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for scant

Adjective

Middle English, from Old Norse skamt, neuter of skammr short

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about scant

Statistics for scant

Last Updated

12 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for scant

The first known use of scant was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for scant

scant

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of scant

: very small in size or amount

scant

adjective
\ ˈskant How to pronounce scant (audio) \

Kids Definition of scant

1 : barely enough Ramona paid scant attention to this little speech …— Beverly Cleary, Ramona Quimby
2 : not quite to a full amount, degree, or extent He poured a scant cup of milk.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on scant

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with scant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for scant

Spanish Central: Translation of scant

Nglish: Translation of scant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of scant for Arabic Speakers

Comments on scant

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to speak slightingly about or to degrade

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!