\ ˈskrəm How to pronounce scrum (audio) \

Definition of scrum

1a or scrummage \ ˈskrə-​mij How to pronounce scrummage (audio) \ : a rugby play in which the forwards of each side come together in a tight formation and struggle to gain possession of the ball using their feet when it is tossed in among them also : the arrangement of players in a scrum
b : a usually brief and disorderly struggle or fight : scrape, scuffle
2a British : madhouse sense 2
b : a usually tightly packed or disorderly crowd : throng

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from scrum

scrummage intransitive verb

Synonyms for scrum


army, bike [chiefly Scottish], cram, crowd, crush, drove, flock, herd, horde, host, legion, mass, mob, multitude, press, rout, swarm, throng

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of scrum in a Sentence

I had to fight my way through the scrum of holiday shoppers at the mall. when the server spilled a drink on a customer, they got into a bit of a scrum before being separated

Recent Examples on the Web

Surrounded by a scrum of guards, they were handcuffed and made to kneel under floodlights until they were taken away in a police wagon. Matthew Wolfe, Harper's magazine, "Without a Trace," 10 Feb. 2019 Slowly walking toward the dugout, the freshman nonchalantly removed her mask, finally cracking a smile as her teammates swarmed around her along the first-base line for a celebratory scrum. Rich Torres, Indianapolis Star, "HS softball: Calm, confident freshman leads Noblesville to sectional title," 24 May 2018 As the scrum of reporters dissipated around Foligno, team president John Davidson approached and offered a congratulatory handshake, joking about how his captain might need to wear a goalie mask for Game 2. Alex Prewitt,, "Despite Injuries and Penalties, Blue Jackets Prove Resilient in OT Win Against Capitals," 13 Apr. 2018 When the parade arrived, flanked by police protecting the marchers from a torrent of harassment, a friend charged through the scrum with the flowers, and Dowling followed. Nestor Ramos,, "Finally, a parade for all Southie to love. But what took so long?," 14 July 2018 The merger scrum is unusual in a number of respects. Austen Hufford, WSJ, "California Water Takes SJW Offer Public," 26 Apr. 2018 That certainly beat the scrum going on around the Whitworths. Barry Wilner, The Seattle Times, "Media night more like a mosh pit and Mardi Gras," 29 Jan. 2019 In 1976, women joined the scrum for the first time. Marissa J. Lang, Washington Post, "‘Plebes no more’: After 2 hours 9 minutes, Naval Academy freshmen conquer greased monument," 21 May 2018 Amused with the scrum that had formed around Mr. Chaudhary, a man in a white dhoti spoke up in English from the back of the crowd, announcing himself as Kailash Mishra, the landowner who employed the girl’s father in his fields. Kai Schultz And Suhasini Raj, New York Times, "Uphill Battle Against Child Marriage Is Being Won in India, for Now," 6 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'scrum.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of scrum

1848, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for scrum

short for scrummage, alteration of scrimmage

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about scrum

Dictionary Entries near scrum





scrum half



Statistics for scrum

Last Updated

15 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for scrum

The first known use of scrum was in 1848

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for scrum



English Language Learners Definition of scrum

: a way of starting play again in which players from each team come together and try to get control of the ball by pushing against each other and using their feet when the ball is thrown in between them
: the group of players who are involved in a scrum
: a large group of people who are close together in one place

More from Merriam-Webster on scrum

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with scrum

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for scrum

Comments on scrum

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


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Finance Words Quiz

  • a-piggy-bank
  • The etymology of mortgage is related most closely to which two words?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!