\ ˈsīṯẖ How to pronounce scythe (audio) , ˈsī How to pronounce scythe (audio) \

Definition of scythe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an implement used for mowing grass, grain, or other crops and composed of a long curving blade fastened at an angle to a long handle


scythed; scything

Definition of scythe (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to use a scythe

transitive verb

: to cut with or as if with a scythe scything cornstalks

Illustration of scythe

Illustration of scythe


In the meaning defined above

Examples of scythe in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Within half an hour, at least two dozen African American men and women, armed with pistols, shotguns, corn cutters and scythes, arrived to assist the Parkers. James Delle, Smithsonian Magazine, "In 1851, a Maryland Farmer Tried to Kidnap Free Blacks in Pennsylvania. He Wasn’t Expecting the Neighborhood to Fight Back," 17 Jan. 2020 Cyrus received a tattoo of a bleeding heart punctured by a dagger, while Simpson went for a skull and crossbones plus an ominous-looking scythe. Emily Dixon, Marie Claire, "Miley Cyrus and Cody Simpson Just Added More Tattoos to Their Collections," 2 Dec. 2019 Along the sanctuary’s walls are pictures of Christian saints as well as many images of death personified, grim reapers holding scythes, reminiscent of cover art of an Iron Maiden album. David Hammond,, "Celebrating Day of the Dead — and an eternal fascination with skeletons — in Mexico City," 17 Oct. 2019 Simpson’s chest ink featured a skull and crossbones line, with the grim reaper scythe’s underneath. Claudia Harmata,, "Miley Cyrus and Cody Simpson Hang Out with Her Sister Noah and Mom Tish as She Calls Him 'My Baby'," 2 Nov. 2019 Wayne Cassell dressed in a hooded black cloak, covered his face with black cloth and carried a scythe to complete a grim reaper costume. Pamela Wood,, "Trump visit draws protesters, supporters to Baltimore," 13 Sep. 2019 In the reimagined world, powder blue, scythe-like petals of the plant Ventus ingenero rotate in the wind blowing across the plant's grassland plains habitat. Lila Thulin, Smithsonian, "This Artist Imagines How Nature Evolves Following an Environmental Apocalypse," 19 July 2019 Or else the bud’s cut short when, as the Slovenes say, the lady with the scythe comes to visit. Lisa Wells, Harper's magazine, "Nightmares at 20,000 Feet," 10 Apr. 2019 The 2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 is completely awesome, a 755-hp racetrack-slaying scythe of a car. Ezra Dyer, Popular Mechanics, "Five Very Important Questions About the 2019 Corvette ZR1," 6 Dec. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Prop Moody's marauding run set the tone before Barrett scythed his way through the Welsh defence to dot down under the posts on 13 minutes. Daniel Gallan, CNN, "All Blacks run rampant against Wales to end Rugby World Cup on a high," 1 Nov. 2019 Swimming in the bay of St.-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, the water like a velvet blanket scythed apart by my hands; seeking sea urchins, anticipating their sweet-briny softness, wearing my metal gloves, carrying my knife. Melinda Stevens, Condé Nast Traveler, "Condé Nast Traveler Editor's Letter: How Travel Gets Us Out of Our Head," 8 Oct. 2019 Arguments about states’ rights or fantasies of antebellum gentility were scythed by her storytelling. Ron Charles, Washington Post, "Toni Morrison not only remade American literature, she challenged us to resist the tenacity of racism," 6 Aug. 2019 In the final minute of the contest, Houghton was scythed down by a brutal Takounda lunge, the striker catching her opponent with studs on the upper shin., "Women's World Cup Roundup: England See Off Hostile Cameroon as France Leave it Late Against Brazil," 23 June 2019 Ribery, who has spent a decade at Bayern, rolled back the years by scything through Leverkusen's defence and slamming home Bayern's superb second goal. Afp,, "Bundesliga Recap: Bayern win in Leverkusen, extend lead to 14," 12 Jan. 2018 Having been put through on goal in first-half stoppage time, Sane was scythed down by Cardiff midfielder Joe Bennett, who was fortunate to receive just a yellow card. USA TODAY, "Quadruple still on for City after FA Cup win at Cardiff," 28 Jan. 2018 The game began in untidy fashion, youngster Ampadu scything through Defoe a couple of minutes into the contest, earning himself an early yellow card., "Chelsea 2-1 Bournemouth: Dramatic Finale Sees Blues Through to Carabao Cup Semi-Finals," 20 Dec. 2017 Maksimovic got the ball but scythed down Murphy in the process, and the referee showed a straight red card. USA TODAY, "Kolarov puts Serbia on verge of qualifying for World Cup," 5 Sep. 2017

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


circa 1580, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for scythe


Middle English sithe, from Old English sīthe; akin to Old English sagu saw — more at saw

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Time Traveler for scythe

Time Traveler

The first known use of scythe was before the 12th century

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Statistics for scythe

Last Updated

26 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Scythe.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 26 January 2020.

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More Definitions for scythe


How to pronounce scythe (audio) How to pronounce scythe (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of scythe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a farming tool with a curved blade and long handle that is used for cutting grass, grain, etc.



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

: to cut (something, such as grass or grain) with a scythe


\ ˈsīt͟h How to pronounce scythe (audio) \

Kids Definition of scythe

: a tool with a curved blade on a long curved handle that is used to mow grass or grain by hand

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More from Merriam-Webster on scythe

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with scythe

Spanish Central: Translation of scythe

Nglish: Translation of scythe for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of scythe for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about scythe

Comments on scythe

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


to express in a more acceptable way

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