or Scar·a·mouche

[ skar-uh-mouch, -moosh ]
/ ˈskær əˌmaʊtʃ, -ˌmuʃ /


a stock character in commedia dell'arte and farce who is a cowardly braggart, easily beaten and frightened.
(lowercase) a rascal or scamp.

Origin of Scaramouch

1655–65; < French Scaramouche < Italian Scaramuccia, proper use of scaramuccia skirmish (applied in jest); of Germanic orig. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for scaramouche

British Dictionary definitions for scaramouche



/ (ˈskærəˌmaʊtʃ, -ˌmuːtʃ) /


a stock character who appears as a boastful coward in commedia dell'arte and farce

Word Origin for Scaramouch

C17: via French from Italian Scaramuccia, from scaramuccia a skirmish

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for scaramouche



1660s, name of a cowardly braggart (supposed by some to represent a Spanish don) in traditional Italian comedy, from Italian Scaramuccia, literally "skirmish," from schermire "to fence," from a Germanic source (cf. Old High German skirmen "defend"); see skirmish (n.). According to OED, a vogue word in late 17c. London due to the popularity of Italian actor Tiberio Fiurelli (1608-1694) in the part.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper