scattering

noun
scat·​ter·​ing | \ˈska-tə-riŋ \

Definition of scattering 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an act or process in which something scatters or is scattered

2 : something scattered: such as

a : a small number or quantity interspersed here and there a scattering of visitors

b : the random change in direction of the particles constituting a beam or wave front due to collision with particles of the medium traversed

scattering

adjective

Definition of scattering (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : going in various directions

2 : found or placed far apart and in no order

3 : divided among many or several scattering votes

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Other Words from scattering

Adjective

scatteringly \ ˈska-​tə-​riŋ-​lē \ adverb

Examples of scattering in a Sentence

Noun

the scattering of the protesters suddenly turned violent and chaotic a scattering of people in the mostly empty theater

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Fred Trump, one of the most prolific New York developers of his time, owned just five apartment complexes, two small strip malls and a scattering of co-ops in the city upon his death. Susanne Craig, The Seattle Times, "Trump engaged in suspect tax schemes as he reaped riches from father," 2 Oct. 2018 By then, the shelves were mostly bare, except for a scattering of stuffed animals, tween jewelry and polyester pillows. Michael Corkery, New York Times, "At Toys ‘R’ Us, ‘There Is Nothing Left’: The Day It Closed for Good," 30 June 2018 And plenty of work has been done to use this as a method to correct for light scattering so that medical imaging using visible and near-infrared light can reach deeper into the body. Chris Lee, Ars Technica, "Big picture? Details? New imaging system offers both," 2 Feb. 2018 These surface states contain electrons that are protected from scattering off of defects. Chris Lee, Ars Technica, "Many rings, not one, create a laser to confound us all," 2 Feb. 2018 Westfield, meanwhile, is home to an emerging restaurant scene; a scattering of other quaint small communities round out the county’s diverse population while still leaving room for farmland. Shelley Specchio, Indianapolis Star, "Discovering Indianapolis’ vibrant neighborhoods: Hamilton County," 29 June 2018 While this scattering of clues are in meteorites that have already reached Earth, there are plenty more up there circling our star. Jamie Seidel, Fox News, "Wild new alien theory emerges," 28 June 2018 Once the flames subside, a scattering of herbs brings the production to a close. Charlotte Druckman, WSJ, "Steak Diane: So Retro, So Right Now," 7 June 2018 Spradley has seen similar scattering by vultures at her Texas body farm. Rob O'dell, azcentral, "What dead pigs can teach us about missing bodies in the Arizona desert," 5 July 2018

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

18 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for scattering

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

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More Definitions for scattering

scattering

noun

English Language Learners Definition of scattering

: a small number or group of things or people that are seen or found at different places or times

scattering

noun
scat·​ter·​ing

Medical Definition of scattering 

: the random change in direction of the particles constituting a beam or wave front due to collision with particles of the medium traversed

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