scatterbrained

adjective
scat·​ter·​brained | \ ˈska-tər-ˌbrānd How to pronounce scatterbrained (audio) \

Definition of scatterbrained

informal
: having or showing a forgetful, disorganized, or unfocused mind : having the characteristics of a scatterbrain As Detective Gina Calabrese on Miami Vice, Saundra Santiago is all clearheaded efficiency. But off-camera her co-stars think she's scatterbrained. "They consider me a space cadet," says Santiago, who frequently loses keys, misses flights and gets into cabs without cash.— Tim Allis

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Examples of scatterbrained in a Sentence

a scatterbrained child who couldn't seem to pay attention or stop fooling around
Recent Examples on the Web As her frustration mounted and her school progress stalled, Kristine indulged in a series of minor rebellions — ignoring assignments, disrupting class, and affecting a scatterbrained personality in a bid for popularity. Jason Deparle, New York Times, "What Makes an American?," 9 Aug. 2019 He was noticed in what Itzkoff depicts with relish as a scatterbrained television business. David Thomson, San Francisco Chronicle, "‘Robin,’ by Dave Itzkoff," 10 May 2018 Attach a durable, waterproof Tile Sport to your backpack or your cooler to be a little less scatterbrained on your outdoor adventures. Wired Staff, WIRED, "The Brand New HTC Vive Pro, and 8 Other Great Weekend Deals," 7 Apr. 2018 Too many times this season Ehlinger made scatterbrained mistakes at critical junctures. Nick Moyle, Houston Chronicle, "Texas Bowl notebook: Shane Buechele in line to start, Malik Jefferson still doubtful," 23 Dec. 2017

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

1747, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for scatterbrained

Time Traveler

The first known use of scatterbrained was in 1747

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Cite this Entry

“Scatterbrained.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/scatterbrained. Accessed 21 January 2020.

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More from Merriam-Webster on scatterbrained

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for scatterbrained

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with scatterbrained

Spanish Central: Translation of scatterbrained

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