\ ˈskrȯl How to pronounce scrawl (audio) \
scrawled; scrawling; scrawls

Definition of scrawl

transitive verb

: to write or draw awkwardly, hastily, or carelessly scrawled his name

intransitive verb

: to write awkwardly or carelessly

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Other Words from scrawl

scrawl noun
scrawler noun
scrawly \ ˈskrȯ-​lē How to pronounce scrawl (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for scrawl


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Examples of scrawl in a Sentence

She scrawled her signature on the receipt. scrawled a quick note, stuck it in their mailbox, and hurried off
Recent Examples on the Web Some scrawl the information by hand with a pen; others apply a preprinted sticker. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, "America Is Already on the Vaccine Honor System," 14 May 2021 Kirschenbaum would also often scrawl her own brief critiques of performances on her programs. New York Times, "Opera’s Biggest Fan Leaves Behind a Sprawling Time Capsule," 23 Apr. 2021 Her eyesight failing, Bedford wore a green visor to shield her eyes while working and managed to painfully scrawl only a few lines a day. Madeleine Schwartz, The New Yorker, "Sybille Bedford and the Unruly Art of the Origin Story," 29 Mar. 2021 In the '90s, Alexander McQueen took the runway show to new heights with the live customization of Shalom Harlow's gown, while 2001 saw Stephen Sprouse scrawl all over Louis Vuitton bags. Bethan Kapur,, "Why Are People Painting All Over Their Telfar Bags?," 2 Mar. 2021 Instead, artfully scrawl the evening’s courses on a reusable chalkboard the same way a restaurant might announce its nightly specials. Popular Science, "Gifts to make eating at home feel like dining out," 23 Nov. 2020 Preparing for the protest, Guston didn’t just scrawl a slogan on a white banner. Sebastian Smee, Washington Post, "Anger at Donald Trump may turn great artists into political cartoonists. It’s happened before.," 4 Sep. 2020 The protesters also appeared to scrawl messages in chalk on Moore’s driveway, as seen in video footage. Peter Aitken, Fox News, "Dozens of protesters visit LAPD chief's house, cover it with anti-police posters," 28 Aug. 2020 Similar language is employed by QAnon believers, who scrawl their accusations across social media. Anchorage Daily News, "How the Trump campaign came to court QAnon, the online conspiracy movement identified by the FBI as a violent threat," 2 Aug. 2020

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

1612, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for scrawl

origin unknown

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Statistics for scrawl

Last Updated

17 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Scrawl.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for scrawl



English Language Learners Definition of scrawl

: to write or draw (something) very quickly or carelessly


\ ˈskrȯl How to pronounce scrawl (audio) \
scrawled; scrawling

Kids Definition of scrawl

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to write quickly and carelessly



Kids Definition of scrawl (Entry 2 of 2)

: something written carelessly or without skill His signature is just a scrawl.

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