\ ˈskäf How to pronounce scoff (audio) , ˈskȯf \

Definition of scoff

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : an expression of scorn, derision, or contempt : gibe
2 : an object of scorn, mockery, or derision


verb (1)
scoffed; scoffing; scoffs

Definition of scoff (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

: to show contempt by derisive acts or language scoffed at the idea

transitive verb

: to treat or address with derision : mock


verb (2)
scoffed; scoffing; scoffs

Definition of scoff (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to eat greedily scoffed dinner
2 : seize often used with up scoffed up the free gifts

intransitive verb

: to eat something greedily

Other Words from scoff

Verb (1)

scoffer noun

Choose the Right Synonym for scoff

Verb (1)

scoff, jeer, gibe, fleer, sneer, flout mean to show one's contempt in derision or mockery. scoff stresses insolence, disrespect, or incredulity as motivating the derision. scoffed at their concerns jeer suggests a coarser more undiscriminating derision. the crowd jeered at the prisoners gibe implies taunting either good-naturedly or in sarcastic derision. hooted and gibed at the umpire fleer suggests grinning or grimacing derisively. the saucy jackanapes fleered at my credulity sneer stresses insulting by contemptuous facial expression, phrasing, or tone of voice. sneered at anything romantic flout stresses contempt shown by refusal to heed. flouted the conventions of polite society

First Known Use of scoff


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Verb (2)

1846, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for scoff


Middle English scof, perhaps of Scandinavian origin; akin to obsolete Danish skof jest; akin to Old Frisian skof mockery

Verb (2)

alteration of dialect scaff to eat greedily

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Time Traveler for scoff

Time Traveler

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

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Cite this Entry

“Scoff.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for scoff


\ ˈskäf How to pronounce scoff (audio) , ˈskȯf \
scoffed; scoffing

Kids Definition of scoff

: to show great disrespect with mocking laughter or behavior People once scoffed at the idea of space travel.

More from Merriam-Webster on scoff

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for scoff

Nglish: Translation of scoff for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of scoff for Arabic Speakers


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