\ ˈskȯr How to pronounce score (audio) \
plural scores

Definition of score

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 or plural score
a : twenty
b : a group of 20 things often used in combination with a cardinal numberfourscore
c : an indefinitely large number
2a : a line (such as a scratch or incision) made with or as if with a sharp instrument
b(1) : a mark used as a starting point or goal
(2) : a mark used for keeping account
3a : an account or reckoning originally kept by making marks on a tally
b : amount due : indebtedness
4 : grudge a score to settle
5a : reason, ground was accepted on the score of high academic achievement
b : subject, topic has nothing to say on that score
6a : the copy of a musical composition in written or printed notation
b : a musical composition specifically : the music for a movie or theatrical production
c : a complete description of a dance composition in choreographic notation
7a : a number that expresses accomplishment (as in a game or test) or excellence (as in quality) either absolutely in points gained or by comparison to a standard
b : an act (such as a goal, run, or touchdown) in any of various games or contests that gains points
8 : success in obtaining something (such as money or drugs) especially through illegal or irregular means
9 : the stark inescapable facts of a situation knows the score


scored; scoring

Definition of score (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to keep a record or account of by or as if by notches on a tally : record
b : to enter in a record
c : to mark with significant lines or notches (as in keeping account)
2 : to mark with lines, grooves, scratches, or notches
3 : berate, scold also : denounce
4a(1) : to make (a score) in a game or contest scored a touchdown scored three points
(2) : to enable (a base runner) to make a score
(3) : to have as a value in a game or contest : count a touchdown scores six points
b(1) : achieve, attain scored a dazzling success
(2) : acquire help a traveler score local drugs— Poitor Koper
(3) : win sense 1 scored free tickets over the radio
5 : to determine the merit of : grade
6a : to write or arrange (music) for a specific performance medium
b : to make an orchestration of
c : to compose a score for (a movie)

intransitive verb

1 : to keep score in a game or contest
2 : to make a score in a game or contest
3a : to gain or have the advantage
b : to be successful: such as
(1) : to succeed in having sexual intercourse
(2) : to manage to obtain illicit drugs
score points
: to gain favor, status, or advantage

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from score


scorer noun

Synonyms for score

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of score in a Sentence

Noun students with low test scores The film's score is by a famous composer. Verb She scored twice in the game. Each correct answer scores two points. In American football, a touchdown scores six points. Who's going to score the game? Judges will score the performances based on their artistic and technical features. Which judges are scoring tonight?
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Remembering Some Guys isn’t confined entirely to baseball; the NBA and NFL produced scores of Guys as well. Jon Tayler,, "37 MLB Players Destined to Become 'Guys' Who Will Be Remembered," 17 Sep. 2019 The Ravens defeated the Cardinals by score of 23 to 17 at M & T Bank Stadium. Mike Preston,, "Preston: Just how good are the Ravens under Lamar Jackson? We’ll find out when they face the Chiefs.," 17 Sep. 2019 Sailor was awarded a score of 18/30 from judges Carrie Ann Inaba, Len Goodman and Bruno Tonioli. Natalie Stone,, "Watch Christie Brinkley's Daughter Sailor Dance on DWTS Premiere After Replacing Supermodel Mom," 16 Sep. 2019 Performing the score of a classic movie live while the movie is screened is all the rage. Susan Dunne,, "’Mad Max’ on mute, with live musical score, showing at Warner theater," 16 Sep. 2019 The Giants have won the previous three meetings in a row, including the most recent in 2015 by a score of 24-10. Chris Wassel, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "Buffalo Bills at New York Giants odds, picks and best bets [UPDATED]," 15 Sep. 2019 Senior wide receiver Javon McKinley, back in good graces after a February dust-up with campus police, took a short pass 65 yards for the first score of his disappointing college career. Mike Berardino, Indianapolis Star, "Ian Book, defense lead Notre Dame football demolition of New Mexico," 14 Sep. 2019 Senior running back JuTahn McClain rushed 13 times for 153 yards and two rushing touchdowns with a long score of 41 yards. Alexander Harrison,, "Week 3 high school football scores from Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana," 13 Sep. 2019 Sabrina Nesbitt and Wa Yeung Tong shared medalist honors for the Sailors with scores of four-over-par 39 on the Mesa Linda course. Daily Pilot, "High School Roundup: Newport Harbor girls’ golf dominates CdM in Battle of the Bay," 12 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Emerging as top-scoring dispensaries and delivery companies were Grasshopper Cannabis Delivery, Chula Vista Cannabis, March and Ash Nirvana and Element 7 Chula Vista. San Diego Union-Tribune, "These marijuana dispensaries and delivery businesses are still competing for licenses in Chula Vista," 17 Sep. 2019 McLellan wants to implement an entirely new style of play, one that transforms the Kings from a one-dimensional defensive stalwart to a heavy-forechecking, high-scoring squad. Los Angeles Times, "The Sports Report: Has Kenley Jansen finally found his groove?," 17 Sep. 2019 Detroit would love to make this a low-scoring contest, which seems likely given the Chargers’ historically slow starts when playing at 1 p.m. E.T. Look for the UNDER (-106) to hit. Marcus Mosher, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "Los Angeles Chargers at Detroit Lions odds, picks and best bets [UPDATED]," 15 Sep. 2019 Flores’s defensive play calling helped the Patriots to a 13-3 Super Bowl victory over the high-scoring Rams., "Minkah Fitzpatrick," 14 Sep. 2019 There was a historic shootout in The Pit as Elder edged Clearwater Academy, 60-54, in the highest-scoring game in Elder history. Shelby Dermer,, "Week 3 high school football takeaways: A perfect week for the GCL-South; CovCath and Newport 4-0," 14 Sep. 2019 The grand slam came a couple of batters after a run-scoring double from Jorge Polanco tied the score. Betsy Helfand, Twin Cities, "Central control: Twins sweep Indians, cut magic number to 9," 14 Sep. 2019 Playing against the high-scoring Kansas City Chiefs, whose defense gave up 347 passing yards and three touchdowns to Jaguars quarterbacks last week, should help open up the Raiders passing offense. Jim Saranteas, USA TODAY, "Week 2 fantasy football deep sleepers: Don't overlook Derek Carr in shootout with Chiefs," 13 Sep. 2019 Mike Moustakas, fresh off his two-homer, five-RBI performance in Wednesday night's win, got the Brewers onto the board first for fourth time in the series with a run-scoring sacrifice fly in the first. Todd Rosiak, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Brewers 3, Marlins 2: A good time for Ryan Braun and a great time to be on a roll," 12 Sep. 2019

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


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


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

History and Etymology for score


Middle English scor, from Old Norse skor notch, tally, twenty; akin to Old English scieran to cut — more at shear

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about score

Statistics for score

Last Updated

1 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for score

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for score


How to pronounce score (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of score

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the number of points, goals, runs, etc., that each player or team has in a game or contest
chiefly US : the number of points that someone gets for correct answers on a test, exam, etc.
: a document showing all the notes of a piece of music



English Language Learners Definition of score (Entry 2 of 2)

: to get points, goals, runs, etc., in a game or contest
: to be worth (a particular number of points) in a game or contest
: to officially record the number of points, goals, runs, etc., that each player or team gets in a game or contest


\ ˈskȯr How to pronounce score (audio) \

Kids Definition of score

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a record of points made or lost (as in a game)
2 : the number of points earned for correct answers on a test
3 : a group of 20 things : twenty
4 : harm done by someone and kept in mind for later response I have a score to settle with you.
6 : a line (as a scratch) made with or as if with something sharp
7 : ground entry 1 sense 8, reason We were tired but wouldn't leave on that score.
8 : the written or printed form of a musical composition

Other Words from score

scoreless \ -​ləs \ adjective


scored; scoring

Kids Definition of score (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to make or cause to make a point or points in a game His brother scored a touchdown.
2 : to cut or mark with a line, scratch, or notch I scored the wood with a knife.
4 : grade entry 2 sense 1, mark My teacher spent the weekend scoring our reports.
5 : to set down in an account : record
6 : to keep the score in a game

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on score

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for score

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with score

Spanish Central: Translation of score

Nglish: Translation of score for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of score for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about score

Comments on score

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


a calculated move

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Confusing Words—A Quiz

  • alice with tweedle dee and tweedle dum
  • I invented a brand new toaster robot and ______ it "Sir Toasts-a-Lot."
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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