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

Definition of scruffy

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

Other Words from scruffy

scruffily \ ˈskrə-​fə-​lē How to pronounce scruffy (audio) \ adverb
scruffiness \ ˈskrə-​fē-​nəs How to pronounce scruffy (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 The scruffy Gragson left the razor behind for the playoffs as the Golden Knights hockey fan tried to emulate the superstitious playoffs beards sported in the NHL. Mark Heim |, al, 6 Nov. 2021 The group was not meant to be a scruffy indie band after all—the bigger the canvas, the more realized the group’s aesthetic has become. Mark Richardson, WSJ, 25 Oct. 2021 Gittings — a tall, scruffy and tattooed photographer — struggled with frequent binge drinking until family members urged him to become sober in August 2020. Jason Duaine Hahn,, 9 Oct. 2021 The proposal calls for more than eliminating Horseshoe Lake, which because of safety concerns was drained two years ago and has morphed from a mud pit into a scruffy depression overgrown with weeds. Peter Krouse, cleveland, 3 Oct. 2021 The bear in question is the mural known informally as the Asbury Bear, a fuzzy, scruffy mascot with big koala ears, a body green as a rainforest, and a worldly cravat of dark red fur. Nick Rallo, Dallas News, 14 Sep. 2021 And like so many scruffy trustafarians before him, Yorick is under the impression everything will work out for him in the end. Devon Maloney, Vulture, 13 Sep. 2021 His image — the hippie locks and earring, that scruffy Elizabethan beard — is the Mona Lisa meme of literature. Washington Post, 9 Sep. 2021 The Fish and Wildlife Service issued a plan to protect the majestic White Bluffs bladderpod, a subspecies of scruffy plant that grows on a row of hills in one county of Washington state. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 3 Sep. 2021

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

scruff, metathetic variant of scurf (also with senses "something worthless or contemptible, contemptible person") + -y entry 1

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Time Traveler for scruffy

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The first known use of scruffy was in 1871

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Last Updated

11 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Scruffy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for scruffy



English Language Learners Definition of scruffy

: not neat, clean, or orderly


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

Kids Definition of scruffy

: dirty or shabby in appearance

More from Merriam-Webster on scruffy

Nglish: Translation of scruffy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of scruffy for Arabic Speakers


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