See more synonyms for scrape on
verb (used with object), scraped, scrap·ing.
  1. to deprive of or free from an outer layer, adhering matter, etc., or to smooth by drawing or rubbing something, especially a sharp or rough instrument, over the surface: to scrape a table to remove paint and varnish.
  2. to remove (an outer layer, adhering matter, etc.) in this way: to scrape the paint and varnish from a table.
  3. to scratch, injure, or mar the surface of in this way: to scrape one's arm on a rough wall.
  4. to produce by scraping: He scraped his initials on the rock.
  5. to collect or do by or as if by scraping; do or gather laboriously or with difficulty (usually followed by up or together): They managed to scrape together a football team.
  6. to rub harshly on or across (something): Don't scrape the floor with your boots!
  7. to draw or rub (a thing) roughly across something: Scrape your shoes on the doormat before you come in.
  8. to level (an unpaved road) with a grader.
  9. Digital Technology. to extract and copy (data) from a website into a structured format using a computer program, as for data manipulation or analysis: This project scrapes comments on online forums for linguistic research. With these tools you can easily scrape websites.
verb (used without object), scraped, scrap·ing.
  1. to scrape something.
  2. to rub against something gratingly.
  3. to produce a grating and unmusical tone from a string instrument.
  4. to draw one's foot back noisily along the ground in making a bow.
  5. to manage or get by with difficulty or with only the barest margin: I barely scraped through on the test.
  6. to economize or save by attention to even the slightest amounts: By careful scraping they managed to survive.
  1. an act or instance of scraping.
  2. a drawing back of the foot noisily along the ground in making a bow.
  3. a harsh, shrill, or scratching sound made by scraping.
  4. a scraped place: a scrape on one's elbow.
  5. an embarrassing or distressing situation; predicament: He is always in some kind of a scrape.
  6. a difference of opinion, fight, or quarrel; scrap2.
  7. Digital Technology.
    1. the process of extracting and copying data from a website into a structured format using a computer program, as for data manipulation or analysis: How long will the scrape take to complete?
    2. the product of this process.

Origin of scrape

1350–1400; (verb) Middle English scrapen, from Old Norse skrapa (replacing Middle English shrapen from Old English scrapian “to scratch”); (cognate with Old Norse skrapa); (noun) Middle English, derivative of the verb
Related formsscrap·a·ble, adjectivescrape·age, nounun·scraped, adjective

Synonyms for scrape

See more synonyms for on Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for scrape up


  1. to move (a rough or sharp object) across (a surface), esp to smooth or clean
  2. (tr; often foll by away or off) to remove (a layer) by rubbing
  3. to produce a harsh or grating sound by rubbing against (an instrument, surface, etc)
  4. (tr) to injure or damage by rough contactto scrape one's knee
  5. (intr) to be very economical or sparing in the use (of) (esp in the phrase scrimp and scrape)
  6. (intr) to draw the foot backwards in making a bow
  7. (tr) to finish (a surface) by use of a scraper
  8. (tr) to make (a bearing, etc) fit by scraping
  9. bow and scrape to behave with excessive humility
  1. the act of scraping
  2. a scraped place
  3. a harsh or grating sound
  4. informal an awkward or embarrassing predicament
  5. informal a conflict or struggle
Derived Formsscrapable, adjectivescraper, noun

Word Origin for scrape

Old English scrapian; related to Old Norse skrapa, Middle Dutch schrapen, Middle High German schraffen
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 scrape up



early 13c., probably from Old Norse skrapa "to scrape, erase," from Proto-Germanic *skrapojan (cf. Old English scrapian "to scrape," Dutch schrapen, German schrappen), from PIE *skerb-, extension of root *(s)ker- "to cut" (see shear (v.)).

Meaning "gather by great effort, collect with difficulty" is from 1540s. Related: Scraped; scraping. To scrape the bottom of the barrel in figurative sense is from 1942, in reference to U.S. employers facing worker shortages during the war.



mid-15c., "a scraping instrument;" late 15c., "act of scraping or scratching," from scrape (v.). Meaning "a shave" is slang from 1859. Meaning "embarrassing or awkward predicament" is recorded from 1709, as OED suggests, "probably from the notion of being 'scraped' in going through a narrow passage."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with scrape up


see (scrape the) bottom of the barrel; bow and scrape; scare (scrape) up.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.