scrib·​ble | \ ˈskri-bəl \
scribbled; scribbling\ ˈskri-​b(ə-​)liŋ \

Definition of scribble

transitive verb

1 : to write hastily or carelessly without regard to legibility or form
2 : to cover with careless or worthless writings or drawings

intransitive verb

: to write or draw hastily and carelessly

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Other Words from scribble

scribble noun

Synonyms for scribble


scratch, scrawl, squiggle

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Examples of scribble in a Sentence

She scribbled a note to him and then dashed off to her meeting. He scribbled down his phone number. Students scribbled furiously as the professor lectured. She was scribbling away in a notebook. The toddler scribbled all over the paper.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Lavinia discovered hundreds of poems in a small bureau, some scribbled on the backs of envelopes. Brenda Wineapple, WSJ, "‘After Emily’ Review: The Belles of Amherst," 25 Oct. 2018 Kim’s sister, Kim Yo Jong, was by his side throughout the ceremony, handing him a pen to sign a guestbook, taking the schoolchildren’s flowers from his hand and scribbling notes at the start of the talks with Moon. Foster Klug,, "How sports prepared one of Boston’s most successful businessmen for primetime," 27 Apr. 2018 Her work for the company has included figuring out how to mass produce the Vetements scribbled-on Reebok sneakers and the collaborative Cyrillic pieces from Russian label Walk of Shame. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "This Viral DIY Shoe Designer Could Shape the Future of Sustainability," 27 Nov. 2018 Faced with the terrifying prospect of death in the trenches, soldiers scribbled down their rawest emotions. Aaron Schnoor, WSJ, "The Great War Produced Some Great Poetry," 9 Nov. 2018 All of my finger scribbles appeared smooth instantly after they were drawn, and there was little to no latency when using my fingers as well. Valentina Palladino, Ars Technica, "Lenovo Yoga Book 2018 review: The keyless keyboard returns, now in E Ink," 2 Nov. 2018 Creative types can scribble, paint and do other activities requiring precision right on the screen itself with a new Apple Pencil stylus ($130) that magnetically attaches to the edge of the screen. Geoffrey A. Fowler, The Seattle Times, "Apple redesigns the iPad Pro, breathes new life in the MacBook Air," 30 Oct. 2018 Many people just scribble an illegible signature that the business never bothers to check. Fox News, "Credit card companies eliminating signature requirements," 4 Apr. 2018 First, and most noticeably, Meghan has cleaned up her signature considerably, taking it from celebrity autography scribble to perfectly legible royal scrawl. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Meghan Markle Has Stopped Signing Her Last Name Since Marrying Prince Harry," 6 Oct. 2018

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

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

History and Etymology for scribble

Middle English scriblen, from Medieval Latin scribillare, from Latin scribere to write

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Statistics for scribble

Last Updated

23 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for scribble

The first known use of scribble was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for scribble



English Language Learners Definition of scribble

: to write (something) quickly and in a way that makes it difficult to read
: to draw lines, shapes, etc., that have no particular meaning in a quick and careless way


scrib·​ble | \ ˈskri-bəl \
scribbled; scribbling

Kids Definition of scribble

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to write quickly or carelessly

Other Words from scribble

scribbler \ ˈskri-​blər \ noun



Kids Definition of scribble (Entry 2 of 2)

: something written quickly or carelessly

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More from Merriam-Webster on scribble

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with scribble

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for scribble

Spanish Central: Translation of scribble

Nglish: Translation of scribble for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of scribble for Arabic Speakers

Comments on scribble

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very full or close together

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