\ˈskra-chē \
scratchier; scratchiest

Definition of scratchy 

1 : marked or made with scratches scratchy drawing scratchy handwriting

2 : likely to scratch : prickly scratchy undergrowth

3 : making a scratching noise

4 : uneven in quality : ragged

5 : causing tingling or itching : irritating scratchy wool

6 : somewhat inflamed and sore a scratchy throat

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Other Words from scratchy

scratchily \ˈskra-chə-lē \ adverb
scratchiness \ˈskra-chē-nəs \ noun

Examples of scratchy in a Sentence

listening to scratchy old records The costume is made from scratchy material. He is sick with a scratchy throat.
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Recent Examples on the Web

In the case of cochlear implants, patients initially experience the human voice as high-pitched and scratchy (think Mickey Mouse) but adapt over time. Justin Chen, STAT, "Pulses of light restored hearing in gerbils. Could that lead to higher-tech cochlear implants?," 11 July 2018 Each tree gets a guard, such as plastic spirals or scratchy wire called hardware cloth, on the base to protect it from mice or pests. Kathy Flanigan, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "In Wisconsin, when life hands you apples, you make elegant ciders. And brandy," 27 June 2018 The best way to fix scratchy eyeballs is to figure out what’s causing them to be so damn irritated in the first place. Korin Miller, SELF, "7 Things That Can Cause Irritated, Scratchy Eyes," 29 June 2018 Since Delta Air Lines rolled out new employee uniforms last week, the carrier has been responding to some issues raised with scratchy aprons, buttons falling off and skin sensitivity to some of the fabric. Kelly Yamanouchi, ajc, "Delta makes fixes in response to glitches in new employee uniforms," 7 June 2018 In the first, Mr. Sciarrino, clearly inspired by Paganini’s dazzling violin caprices, writes an avant-garde equivalent, with whirlwinds of jagged, scratchy-toned arpeggios that flow into slinky, sliding tones, then erupt in staccato madness. New York Times, "Review: A Tiny Garage Explodes in Pianistic Madness," 25 June 2018 Six months of cold, dry weather, not to mention constricting boots and scratchy socks, have no doubt caused havoc. Max Berlinger, The Seattle Times, "Guys, before you switch to sandals, check out your feet," 21 June 2018 With an ambient soundtrack and a scratchy VHS aesthetic, the film evokes nostalgia as well, positioning the dancer as a spark of humanity in an increasingly technological world. Leah Pickett, Chicago Reader, "Chicago Underground Film Festival: The Shorts," 5 June 2018 There’s always a kind of scratchy feel, something that feels kind of chalky — visually. Juliana Feliciano Reyes,, "Meet UArts' Loveis Wise, 23, who just illustrated the cover of the New Yorker," 4 June 2018

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

1827, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for scratchy

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Time Traveler for scratchy

The first known use of scratchy was in 1827

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More Definitions for scratchy



English Language Learners Definition of scratchy

: having a rough sound : having a sound like the sound made when something sharp or rough rubs against a surface or object

: rough and irritating to the skin : likely to make you itch

: swollen and sore


\ˈskra-chē \
scratchier; scratchiest

Kids Definition of scratchy

1 : likely to injure with something sharp a scratchy rosebush

2 : causing irritation a scratchy wool sweater

3 : coarse sense 1 I shook his scratchy hand.

4 : somewhat sore a scratchy throat

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Comments on scratchy

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


exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

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