\ˈskəf \
scuffed; scuffing; scuffs

Definition of scuff 

(Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to walk without lifting the feet : shuffle

b : to poke or shuffle a foot in exploration or embarrassment

2 : to become scratched, chipped, or roughened by wear a countertop that won't scuff

transitive verb

2a : to scrape (the feet) along a surface while walking or back and forth while standing

b : to poke at with the toe

3 : to scratch, gouge, or wear away the surface of scuffed my shoes



Definition of scuff (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a noise of or as if of scuffing

b : the act or an instance of scuffing

c : a mark or injury caused by scuffing

2 : a flat-soled slipper without quarter or heel strap — compare mule

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Examples of scuff in a Sentence


She scuffed down the hall towards her room. scuffed up her shoes by rubbing her feet under the rung of the chair


She slid into her scuffs and headed into the kitchen.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In my testing, the x360’s biggest problem has been the lid’s tendency to scuff in my bag. David Pierce, WSJ, "The Best Windows Laptop $1,000(ish) Can Buy," 27 Mar. 2018 Mexico's second goal could have knocked the stuffing out of South Korea as Hernandez cut inside his marker and scuffed a finish past a helpless Cho, but still the 2002 semi finalists continued to fight and attempt to mount a comeback., "South Korea 1-2 Mexico: El Tri Put One Foot in Last 16 Despite Late Screamer From Son," 23 June 2018 The Real Madrid forward threatened a second soon after, swivelling on the edge of the area and scuffing just wide after a powerful run from left-back Raphael Guerreiro. Martyn Wood,, "Ronaldo again leads Portugal to victory against Morocco," 20 June 2018 Australian cricket has been rocked to the core after three national players conspired to cheat by scuffing the ball with sandpaper during a match against South Africa a week ago. The New York Times, New York Times, "Pope Francis Delivers Plea for Peace in Easter Sunday Mass," 1 Apr. 2018 Both Thiago Silva and Paulinho missed glorious opportunities to open the scoring from corners, Silva hitting the post and Paulinho scuffing his shot. James Taylor, Pro Soccer USA, "Brazil 1-2 Belgium: Red Devils Shatter Brazil’s Dreams With Clinical Display to Set Up France Clash," 6 July 2018 Among them, said Stones, was Colombia's players surrounding and pushing the referee, head-butting Jordan Henderson and scuffing the penalty spot before Harry Kane's second-half spot kick. Steve Douglas,, "England's John Stones calls Colombia the 'dirtiest team' he's ever faced," 5 July 2018 After England was awarded a second-half penalty – eventually converted by Harry Kane – several Colombian players tried to scuff up the penalty spot while Geiger was not looking. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, "Colombian captain blasts American World Cup referee for 'shamefully' favoring England," 4 July 2018 In the final minute, Ronaldo had whipped in a free kick to equalize for Portugal against Spain; Messi, presented with a similar set play, his third of the game, scuffed his shot into the wall. Jonathan Wilson,, "Lionel Messi, Argentina Left Frustrated After Being Denied in Iceland Draw," 16 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

According to a Department of Motor Vehicles report, the kind any autonomous vehicle tester must submit to the state of California after any incident, both vehicles escaped with only scuffs. Aarian Marshall, WIRED, "A Cruise-on-Cruise Crash Reveals the Hardest Thing About Self-Driving Tech," 3 July 2018 Mirack was wearing her jacket and gloves and that, combined with scuff marks, led authorities to believe she had been dragged back into the home, Stedman said. Alexia Fernandez,, "Wedding DJ Arrested for the Brutal 1992 Rape and Murder of School Teacher Christy Mirack," 26 June 2018 The cotton fabrics have been fortified with a protective frame that guards against drops and scuffs. Jean Palmieri | Wwd,, "Zachary Prell creates iPhone cases from shirt fabrics," 26 June 2018 Slumped in his Beijing hospital bed in tatty ward-issue pajamas, the 69-year-old is a warren of aches and scuffs, and sports a whopping frostbite sore on each of his two cheeks. Charlie Campbell / Beijing, Time, "'I Hate It.' Double-Amputee Climber Xia Boyu Vows Never to Return to Everest," 14 June 2018 The colors are incredibly rich but the film has scuffs, something moviephiles enjoy as authentic. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "There Are Secrets in the Texas Theatre," 25 May 2018 Almost every home today probably has a closet or two with plenty of scuffs that is thirsty for a fresh coat. Brian Sodoma, azcentral, "8 creative ways to use leftover paint," 9 May 2018 Danny Welbeck's only finishing technique is the scuff., "From the Ground: Collective Failure to Launch Sees Arsene Wenger's Long Goodbye Splutter Into Life," 22 Apr. 2018 Dropping it from a height of about five feet onto concrete caused no damage beyond scuffs to the exterior frame, with zero damage to the screen itself. Alexander George, Popular Mechanics, "The Most Useful Podcast Ever: The Motorola Droid Turbo II Really Is Incredible and Unbreakable," 25 Nov. 2015

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


1768, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a


1899, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for scuff


origin unknown

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Learn More about scuff

Dictionary Entries near scuff







scuffle hoe

Statistics for scuff

Last Updated

23 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for scuff

The first known use of scuff was in 1768

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More Definitions for scuff



English Language Learners Definition of scuff

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make a mark or scratch in the surface of (something) by scraping it

: to walk without lifting your feet : to drag your feet while you walk



English Language Learners Definition of scuff (Entry 2 of 2)

: a mark that is made by scuffing something

scuffs : slippers that are open at the heel


\ˈskəf \
scuffed; scuffing

Kids Definition of scuff

1 : to scrape the feet while walking

2 : to mark or scratch by scraping Don't scuff your good shoes.

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