- to make scratches or superficial incisions in (the skin, a wound, etc.), as in vaccination.
- to lacerate by severe criticism.
- to loosen (the soil) with a type of cultivator.
- to hasten the sprouting of (hard-covered seeds) by making incisions in the seed coats.
- to break up (a road surface).
Origin of scarify
Examples from the Web for scarify
Sometimes it may be necessary to scarify the gums, or to apply leeches to them.Popular Technology, Vol. I (of 2)
He bobbed at once, but she hastened to the door to scarify him.Tommy and Grizel
Their mode of obtaining charity was to go barefoot and scarify their heels so that the blood might show.Haunted London
Perhaps the stinging words of last night had at last sunk deep enough to scarify his self-esteem.The Toilers of the Field
To relieve their wearied legs and feet after long marches, they scarify the former with sharp flints.The Works of Hubert Howe Bancroft, Volume 1
Hubert Howe Bancroft
- surgery to make tiny punctures or superficial incisions in (the skin or other tissue), as for inoculating
- to break up and loosen (soil) to a shallow depth
- to scratch or abrade the outer surface of (seeds) to increase water absorption or hasten germination
- to wound with harsh criticism
- (tr) informal to make scared; frighten
Word Origin and History for scarify
mid-15c., "make incisions in the bark of a tree," from Middle French scarifier "score, scrape" (leather or hide), 14c., from Late Latin scarificare (see scarification). The sense "cover with scars" (1680s) is a sense-shift from influence of scar (v.). Related: Scarified; scarifier; scarifying.
- To make shallow cuts in the skin, as when vaccinating.