\ ˈskrāp \
scraped; scraping

Definition of scrape 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to remove from a surface by usually repeated strokes of an edged instrument

b : to make (a surface) smooth or clean with strokes of an edged instrument or an abrasive

2a : to grate harshly over or against

b : to damage or injure the surface of by contact with a rough surface

c : to draw roughly or noisily over a surface

3 : to collect by or as if by scraping often used with up or together scrape up the price of a ticket

intransitive verb

1 : to move in sliding contact with a rough surface

2 : to accumulate money by small economies

3 : to draw back the foot along the ground in making a bow

4 : to make one's way with difficulty : barely manage or succeed just scraped through at school working two jobs and barely scraping by



Definition of scrape (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the act or process of scraping

b : a sound made by scraping

c : a mark or injury caused by scraping : abrasion bumps and scrapes

2a : the nest of a bird consisting of a usually shallow depression in the ground

b : a cleared area on the forest floor made by a male deer during breeding season to attract a doe

3 : a bow made with a drawing back of the foot along the ground

4a : a distressing encounter a scrape with death

b : altercation, fight

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Other words from scrape


scraper noun

Synonyms for scrape

Synonyms: Verb

abrade, graze, scratch, scuff

Synonyms: Noun

brush, encounter, hassle, run-in, skirmish

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Examples of scrape in a Sentence


Someone had scraped the car with a key. I scraped one of the chairs while bringing it up the stairs. I scraped my knee when I fell. fingernails scraping against a blackboard the sound of chairs scraping on the floor as people stood to leave The boat scraped against the edge of the dock. She scraped her fingernails across the blackboard. The deer scraped its antlers against the tree. Scrape the seeds into a bowl. Scrape the paint from the wood.


There's a scrape on the fender that wasn't there yesterday. I got a scrape on my knee when I fell. We survived the accident with a few minor bumps and scrapes. She got into a few scrapes with the police when she was younger. the scrape of fingernails on a blackboard
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

To sharpen it, Ötzi would have had to apply pressure and flake off its edges, rather than scrape it against another rock. Nicholas St. Fleur, New York Times, "The Final Hours of the Iceman’s Tools," 21 June 2018 Stir in and scrape the brown butter bits into the fat. Nancy Miller, The Courier-Journal, "Constantly evolving MilkWood helps shape Louisville's food scene," 19 June 2018 Most injuries related to lava occur when people walk on cooled lava and scrape themselves, Damby says. Alessandra Potenza, The Verge, "Falling into lava would be a pretty hot mess," 30 May 2018 The city would hire a private contractor to scrape the tiles off the roundabout. Sven Berg, The Seattle Times, "Heat, water and trucks are destroying a Boise mosaic," 9 July 2018 But the idea of using pressure to scrape the pores is a big red flag for derms. Macaela Mackenzie, Allure, "The "Skin Spatula" Device Is Going Viral as a Blackhead Treatment," 6 July 2018 Among the trove were two strigils, blunt hooks that Romans used to clean themselves and wipe off oil while bathing and that athletes used to scrape away sweat. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Construction Workers Find Rare Intact Roman Tomb," 13 June 2018 Use a knife to scrape the outer layer of stems in search of green or yellow and moist tissue that suggests the plants are still alive. Tom Maccubbin,, "All mulches do the same things," 5 May 2018 Rushing water and ice jams from the Rockies used to scrape the prairies of sediment, creating for a network of sandbars and braided channels to spread out over the Nebraska plains. National Geographic, "This Is What One of the Last Great Migrations Looks Like," 17 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The laboring of our lungs and the scrape of our boots were the loudest sounds. Hillary Jordan, Outside Online, "Hillary Jordan on Her First Bear Encounter," 11 July 2018 The most common types of injury were bruises and scrapes (29 percent) and cuts (23 percent). Melissa Reinert,, "Study: 25 child bike injuries treated per hour. Here's how to keep your kid safe," 27 June 2018 The scrape of metal dishware and the chatter of eager customers rises above the sound of the torrential rain outside. Chase Quinn, Bon Appetit, "Inside the Lunch Rush at Bertha’s Kitchen, a Soul Food Institution," 6 June 2018 Police found more than a half-ounce of cocaine on Adams-Mabin, who was treated at the scene for a scrape to his forehead, reported The San Francisco Chronicle. Don Sweeney, sacbee, "He woke to find a stranger in his home. The man offered to sell him cocaine, cops say," 5 July 2018 Huddled over a battered pair of scales, Aye Aye Thein estimates the price of hair by its feel and a simple scrape of the bundle with an open scissor arm to test for firmness and smoothness. Libby Hogan, CNN, "Untangling Myanmar's trade in human hair," 16 May 2018 Sheriff's spokeswoman Brenda Bassett said in a statement Monday the baby suffered only minor scrapes and bruising. Ashley May, USA TODAY, "'Miracle' baby buried alive in Montana woods for 9 hours was saved by a deputy who heard a faint cry," 10 July 2018 At 20MHz, the Motorola 68030 scrapes through as a surprisingly capable music-playing processor—with some caveats, of course. Decoding MP3s on the fly is a fantasy on the IIsi. Chris Wilkinson, Ars Technica, "1990, meet 2018: How far does 20MHz of Macintosh IIsi power go today?," 1 July 2018 For sweetened yogurt, add agave and vanilla bean (cut bean and scrape vanilla from inside with back of spoon; reserve the bean pod). Caron Golden,, "Yogurt: Purely homemade," 25 June 2018

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


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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for scrape


Middle English, from Old Norse skrapa; akin to Old English scrapian to scrape, Latin scrobis ditch, Russian skresti to scrape

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Statistics for scrape

Last Updated

17 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for scrape

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

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More Definitions for scrape



English Language Learners Definition of scrape

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to damage (the surface of something) or hurt (a part of your body) by rubbing something rough or sharp against it or by making it rub against something rough or sharp

: to rub or cause (something) to rub against a hard surface and make a harsh and usually unpleasant sound

: to remove (something) from a surface by rubbing an object or tool against it



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

: a mark or injury that is caused by something rubbing against something else

: a bad, dangerous, or unpleasant situation

: a harsh and usually unpleasant sound that is made when something rubs against a hard surface


\ ˈskrāp \
scraped; scraping

Kids Definition of scrape

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to remove by repeated strokes with something sharp or rough He scraped a patch of crust off with his fingernail. —Jerry Spinelli, Maniac Magee

2 : to clean or smooth by rubbing I scraped the windshield to clear off the ice.

3 : to rub or cause to rub so as to make a harsh noise The boat's keel scraped the stony bottom.

4 : to hurt or roughen by dragging against a rough surface I scraped my knee on the pavement.

5 : to get with difficulty and a little at a time I'm trying to scrape up money.



Kids Definition of scrape (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a sound, mark, or injury made by something being dragged or rubbed against something else

2 : a difficult or unpleasant situation

3 : the act of scraping

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Comments on scrape

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


an open space surrounded by woods

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