scar·​ab | \ ˈsker-əb How to pronounce scarab (audio) , ˈska-rəb \

Definition of scarab

1 : any of a family (Scarabaeidae) of stout-bodied beetles (such as a dung beetle) with lamellate or fan-shaped antennae
2 : a stone or faience beetle used in ancient Egypt as a talisman, ornament, and a symbol of resurrection

Examples of scarab in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Tamut was mummified with a large sheet-metal falcon ornament and a scarab over what was once her heart. Brian T. Allen, National Review, "In Montreal, Egyptian Mummies, in 3-D, Have Secrets to Share," 18 Jan. 2020 Archaeologists also uncovered a large stone scarab and two smaller wood and sandstone depictions of the sacred beetle. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Archaeologists Reveal Rare Mummified Lion Cubs Unearthed in Egypt," 26 Nov. 2019 Made of amethyst, bone, faience, glass, turquoise, and umber, and including phallic amulets, scarabs, a woman, a dancing satyr, and a head of Dionysus, they are thought to be the treasure box of a sorceress. Rafil Kroll-zaidi, Harper's magazine, "Findings," 28 Oct. 2019 Images of scarabs were believed to bring good fortune, in this world and the next, if sewn in to the wrappings of your mummy. National Geographic, "6 surprisingly lucky animals around the world," 13 Mar. 2019 In ancient Egypt, the most important amulet was the scarab, usually modeled after the common Egyptian dung beetle, Scarabaeus sacer. National Geographic, "6 surprisingly lucky animals around the world," 13 Mar. 2019 And a scarab ring (which held amuletic powers in ancient Egypt) features iridescent wings crafted from, what else, but the actual wings of a dung beetle. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "Jeweler Bibi van der Velden Converted a Church Gymnasium Into an Elegant Family Home," 21 Aug. 2018 This image shows the decoration of a large funerary scarab made from green semiprecious stone. Chris Giles, CNN, "Stunning photos capture Egypt's ancient underworld," 27 Mar. 2018 At Alexander McQueen, Sarah Burton used the notion of metamorphosis — as in the life cycle of scarab beetles and butterflies that begin as one thing and end up as something quite different — as a way of exploring hybrid dressing. Adam Tschorn,, "Paris Fashion Week trend takeaway: pops of purple, silver belles, giant jackets, winter florals and haute hybrids," 9 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'scarab.' 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 scarab

1579, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for scarab

Middle French scarabee, from Latin scarabaeus

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Time Traveler for scarab

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The first known use of scarab was in 1579

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Statistics for scarab

Last Updated

22 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Scarab.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 29 January 2020.

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More Definitions for scarab


How to pronounce scarab (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of scarab

: a large beetle with a black shell


scar·​ab | \ ˈska-rəb How to pronounce scarab (audio) \

Kids Definition of scarab

: a large dark beetle used in ancient Egypt as a symbol of eternal life

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More from Merriam-Webster on scarab

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with scarab

Spanish Central: Translation of scarab

Nglish: Translation of scarab for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about scarab

Comments on scarab

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


to assert without proof or before proving

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