• synonyms


[skrof-yuh-luh s]
  1. pertaining to, resembling, of the nature of, or affected with scrofula.
  2. morally tainted.
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Origin of scrofulous

First recorded in 1605–15; scroful(a) + -ous
Related formsscrof·u·lous·ly, adverbscrof·u·lous·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for scrofulous

Historical Examples

  • He was suffering from a scrofulous ulcer in the neck, and it was a hideous disfigurement.

    My New Curate

    P.A. Sheehan

  • As for the scrofulous ones, we'll just put them out of sight.

  • It is beneficial for dyspepsia, gout, rheumatism, and scrofulous diseases.

    Down the Rhine

    Oliver Optic

  • Scrofulous and rickety children are the most usual sufferers in this way.

  • If there is a scrofulous or consumptive taint in the blood, beware!

British Dictionary definitions for scrofulous


  1. of, relating to, resembling, or having scrofula
  2. morally degraded
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Derived Formsscrofulously, adverbscrofulousness, noun
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 scrofulous


early 15c., from Medieval Latin scrophulosus; see scrofula + -ous. Related: Scrofulously; scrofulousness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

scrofulous in Medicine


  1. Relating to, affected with, or resembling scrofula.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.