\ ˈskrə-fē How to pronounce scruffy (audio) \
scruffier; scruffiest

Definition of scruffy

: unkempt, slovenly, shaggy a scruffy neighborhood a scruffy beard

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Other Words from scruffy

scruffily \ ˈskrə-​fə-​lē How to pronounce scruffily (audio) \ adverb
scruffiness \ ˈskrə-​fē-​nəs How to pronounce scruffiness (audio) \ noun

Examples of scruffy in a Sentence

The neighborhood is full of dilapidated houses with scruffy backyards. dressed in scruffy old clothes to clean out the garage

Recent Examples on the Web

Kendall and Deitchman are in their forties, with scruffy beards and friendly demeanors. Lizzie Widdicombe, The New Yorker, "The Newsstands of the Future Will Have No Newspapers," 21 June 2019 Back then, the area was a neighborhood of scruffy car lots, Mexican restaurants and little frame houses. Steve Brown, Dallas News, "Harwood District tower eyed for Uptown area would be the tallest in the neighborhood," 17 June 2019 Aniston did insist on one requirement from her scruffy co-star. Bryan Alexander, USA TODAY, "'Murder Mystery': Adam Sandler's wife gave tips during the Jennifer Aniston kissing scenes," 14 June 2019 The first of her drawing companions was Mog, a scruffy black-striped tabby who became, with input from her eight successors, the heroine of 17 books. The Economist, "Obituary: Judith Kerr died on May 23rd," 8 June 2019 As of March 16, Benji, the scruffy box-office sensation of the 1970s and ’80s, is back and Netflix has got him. Glenn Kenny, New York Times, "A (Shaggy) Star Is Reborn: Netflix Brings Us a New ‘Benji’," 9 Mar. 2018 And now, Brooklyn Beckham is taking the scruffy sneaker to even scruffier heights. Vogue, "Brooklyn Beckham Shows Why a Beat-Up Sneaker Is Best," 16 May 2019 In fact, Harry's older brother and second in line to the British throne, Prince William, experimented with a scruffy look of his own in 2008. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Prince William Grew Out a Beard in 2008 and These Throwback Pictures Documented It," 16 Dec. 2018 That's great news for anyone who is dying to get a peek at a land destined to become overrun by scruffy nerf herders. Megan Friedman And Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "Disney Just Released New Details for Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at Both Disney World and Disneyland," 8 Mar. 2019

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

1871, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for scruffy

English dialect scruff something worthless

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Dictionary Entries near scruffy






scrum half


Statistics for scruffy

Last Updated

28 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for scruffy

The first known use of scruffy was in 1871

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More Definitions for scruffy



English Language Learners Definition of scruffy

informal : not neat, clean, or orderly


\ ˈskrə-fē How to pronounce scruffy (audio) \
scruffier; scruffiest

Kids Definition of scruffy

: dirty or shabby in appearance

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More from Merriam-Webster on scruffy

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with scruffy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for scruffy

Spanish Central: Translation of scruffy

Nglish: Translation of scruffy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of scruffy for Arabic Speakers

Comments on scruffy

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


to complain fretfully

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