\ˈskrəm \

Definition of scrum 

1a or scrummage \ˈskrə-​mij \ : 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

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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

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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

Push past the scrum of photographers snapping shots of street style stars. Maya Singer, Vogue, "I Took Bangladeshi Photographer Activist Taslima Akhter to New York Fashion Week—Here’s What Happened," 5 Oct. 2018 The two have teamed up to offer reduced rate membership to Delta Skymiles members and the ability to use biometric scans to gain entry to airport lounges (and avoid the scrum of weary fliers waiting to show their membership card or boarding pass). Barbara Peterson, Condé Nast Traveler, "Delta Brings Biometric Boarding to Detroit Airport," 19 July 2018 In the main hall there was a scrum of children (miserable for the most part), parents (ditto), and helpful teachers (who weren't miserable). Michael Lindsay-hogg, Town & Country, "Brando in a Blue Blazer," 22 Aug. 2013 As Woods enters the scrum, fans are close enough to touch him. Brian Costa, WSJ, "Tiger Woods, Master of the Recovery Shot, Needs to Hit Fewer of Them," 13 Aug. 2018 Eric Sogard greeted him with a ringing single to center off a 100-mph fastball but then found himself in the middle of a scrum after Hernán Pérez tried bunting him up to second. Todd Rosiak, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Brewers 2, Cardinals 1: Jesús Aguilar belts two home runs, including a walk-off blast in thriller," 22 June 2018 Mollie, that scrum, the press in the White House looked like an out of control kindergarten that needed a time out. Fox News, "Two FBI agents sought to 'stop' Trump," 18 June 2018 Team captain Alex Ovechkin was on the edge of the scrum, bouncing and screaming, trying to make sure his voice could be heard from Las Vegas to Washington to Moscow. Rick Maese,, "Capitals, and Washington, celebrate a victory decades in the making," 7 June 2018 Out of a scrum, Harrison popped it in the net while Foreman was screened from the shot, Red Storm coach George Roycroft said. Katherine Dunn,, "Last-minute goal gives Dunbar the city Division II girls lacrosse title over Edmondson," 5 May 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.

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First Known Use of scrum

1857, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for scrum

short for scrummage, alteration of scrimmage

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Dictionary Entries near scrum





scrum half



Statistics for scrum

Last Updated

14 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for scrum

The first known use of scrum was in 1857

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English Language Learners Definition of scrum

rugby : 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).


a nest or breeding place

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