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as in to spray
to cover by or as if by scattering something over or on the hillside was scattered with boulders deposited by the last ice age

Synonyms & Similar Words

as in to dissipate
to go off in different directions and cease to exist as a body or unified whole these drunken revelers will quickly scatter when the police arrive

Synonyms & Similar Words

Antonyms & Near Antonyms

Synonym Chooser

How does the verb scatter differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of scatter are dispel, disperse, and dissipate. While all these words mean "to cause to separate or break up," scatter implies a force that drives parts or units irregularly in many directions.

the bowling ball scattered the pins

When could dispel be used to replace scatter?

The meanings of dispel and scatter largely overlap; however, dispel stresses a driving away or getting rid of as if by scattering.

an authoritative statement that dispelled all doubt

In what contexts can disperse take the place of scatter?

The words disperse and scatter are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, disperse implies a wider separation and a complete breaking up of a mass or group.

police dispersed the crowd

Where would dissipate be a reasonable alternative to scatter?

In some situations, the words dissipate and scatter are roughly equivalent. However, dissipate stresses complete disintegration or dissolution and final disappearance.

the fog was dissipated by the morning sun

Thesaurus Entries Near scatter

Cite this Entry

“Scatter.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 May. 2024.

More from Merriam-Webster on scatter

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