[ skav-inj ]
/ ˈskæv ɪndʒ /

verb (used with object), scav·enged, scav·eng·ing.

to take or gather (something usable) from discarded material.
to cleanse of filth, as a street.
to expel burnt gases from (the cylinder of an internal-combustion engine).
Metallurgy. to purify (molten metal) by introducing a substance that will combine chemically with impurities.

verb (used without object), scav·enged, scav·eng·ing.

Origin of scavenge

First recorded in 1635–45; back formation from scavenger

Related forms

un·scav·enged, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for scavenge

British Dictionary definitions for scavenge


/ (ˈskævɪndʒ) /


to search for (anything usable) among discarded material
(tr) to purify (a molten metal) by bubbling a suitable gas through it. The gas may be inert or may react with the impurities
to clean up filth from (streets, etc)
chem to act as a scavenger for (atoms, molecules, ions, radicals, etc)
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