scour

1
[skouuhr, skou-er]

verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

noun


Origin of scour

1
1250–1300; Middle English scouren (v.) < Middle Dutch scūren < Old French escurer < Latin excūrāre to take care of (Medieval Latin escūrāre to clean), equivalent to ex- ex-1 + cūrāre to care for

Synonyms for scour

scour

2
[skouuhr, skou-er]

verb (used with object)

to range over, as in a search: They scoured the countryside for the lost child.
to run or pass quickly over or along.

verb (used without object)

to range about, as in search of something.
to move rapidly or energetically.

Origin of scour

2
1250–1300; Middle English scouren; perhaps < Old Norse skūr shower1

Synonyms for scour

1. comb, rake, scan.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


Examples from the Web for scouring

Contemporary Examples of scouring

Historical Examples of scouring

  • There are so many of us scouring the town every day without getting the smallest job.

    His Masterpiece

    Emile Zola

  • Thereupon they went their way, scouring the fields as far as the road to Mareuil.

    Fruitfulness

    Emile Zola

  • The whole fleet were not scouring the seas at three of the clock this morrow!

    Clare Avery

    Emily Sarah Holt

  • You'll never catch the rascals by scouring the desert with a handful of men.

    Tabitha's Vacation

    Ruth Alberta Brown

  • The lady was very particular about the scouring of wainscotings and doors.

    Mary, Mary

    James Stephens


British Dictionary definitions for scouring

scour

1

verb

to clean or polish (a surface) by washing and rubbing, as with an abrasive cloth
to remove dirt from or have the dirt removed from
(tr) to clear (a channel) by the force of water; flush
(tr) to remove by or as if by rubbing
(intr) (of livestock, esp cattle) to have diarrhoea
(tr) to cause (livestock) to purge their bowels
(tr) to wash (wool) to remove wax, suint, and other impurities

noun

the act of scouring
the place scoured, esp by running water
something that scours, such as a cleansing agent
(often plural) prolonged diarrhoea in livestock, esp cattle
Derived Formsscourer, noun

Word Origin for scour

C13: via Middle Low German schūren, from Old French escurer, from Late Latin excūrāre to cleanse, from cūrāre; see cure

scour

2

verb

to range over (territory), as in making a search
to move swiftly or energetically over (territory)

Word Origin for scour

C14: from Old Norse skūr
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 scouring

scour

v.1

"cleanse by hard rubbing," c.1200, from Middle Dutch scuren, schuren "to polish, to clean," and from Old French escurer, both from Late Latin excurare "clean off," literally "take good care of," from Latin ex- "out" (see ex-) + curare "care for" (see cure (v.)). Possibly originally a technical term among Flemish workmen in England. Related: Scoured; scouring. As a noun, 1610s, from the verb.

scour

v.2

"move quickly in search of something," c.1300, probably from Old Norse skyra "rush in," related to skur "storm, shower, shower of missiles" (see shower (n.)). Perhaps influenced by or blended with Old French escorre "to run out," from Latin excurrere (see excursion). Sense probably influenced by scour (v.1).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper