Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary




A mean fellow; a wretch. [Not in use.]

SCRUB, v.t. [This word is probably formed on rub, or its root, and perhaps scrape, L. scribo, may be from the same radix.]

To rub hard, either with the hand or with a cloth or an instrument; usually, to rub hard with a brush, or with something coarse or rough, for the purpose of cleaning, scouring or making bright; as, to scrub a floor; to scrub a deck; to scrub vessels of brass or other metal.

SCRUB, v.i. To be diligent and penurious; as, to scrub hard for a living.

1. A mean fellow; one that labors hard and lives meanly.

2. Something small and mean.

No little scrub joint shall come on my board.

3. A worn out brush.

SCRUBBED, SCRUBBY, a. Small and mean; stunted in growth; as a scrubbed boy; a scrubby cur; a scrubby tree.

SCRUF, for scurf, not in use.

SCRUPLE, n. [L. scrupulus, a doubt; scrupulum, the third part of a dram, from scrupus, a chess-man; probably a piece, a small thing, from scrapping, like scrap.]

1. Doubt; hesitation from the difficulty of determining what is right or expedient; backwardness; reluctance to decide or to act. A man of fashionable honor makes no scruple to take another’s life, or expose his own. He has no scruples of conscience, or he despises them.

2. A weight of twenty grains, the third part of a dram; among goldsmiths, the weight of 24 grains.

3. Proverbially, a very small quantity.

4. In Chaldean chronology, the 1/1080 part of an hour; a division of time used by the Jews, Arabs, etc.

Scruple of half duration, an arch of the moon’s orbit, which the moon’s center describes from the beginning of an eclipse to the middle.

Scruples of immersion or incidence, an arch of the moon’s orbit, which her center describes from the beginning of the eclipse to the time when its center falls into the shadow.

Scruples of emersion, an arch of the moon’s orbit, which her center describes in the time from the first emersion of the moon’s limb to the end of the eclipse.

SCRUPLE, v.i. To doubt; to hesitate.

He scrupl’d not to eat, against his better knowledge.

SCRUPLE, v.t. To doubt; to hesitate to believe; to question; as, to scruple the truth or accuracy of an account or calculation.

SCRUPLED, pp. Doubted; questioned.

SCRUPLER, n. A doubter; one who hesitates.

SCRUPLING, ppr. Doubting; hesitating; questioning.

SCRUPULOSITY, n. [L. scrupulositas.]

1. The quality or state of being scrupulous; doubt; doubtfulness respecting some difficult point, or proceeding from the difficulty or delicacy of determining how to act; hence, the caution or tenderness arising from the fear of doing wrong or offending.

The first sacrilege is looked upon with some horror; but when they have once made the breach, their scrupulosity soon retires.

2. Nicety of doubt; or nice regard to exactness and propriety.

So careful, even to scrupulosity, were they to keep their sabbath.

3. Niceness; preciseness.

SCRUPULOUS, a. [L. scrupulosus.]

1. Nicely doubtful; hesitating to determine or to act; cautious in decision from a fear of offending or doing wrong. Be careful in moral conduct, not to offend scrupulous brethren.

The judges that say upon the jail, and those that attended, sickened upon it and died.

2. To be satiated; to be filled to disgust.

3. To become disgusting or tedious. The toiling pleasure sickens into pain.

4. To be disgusted; to be filled with aversion or abhorrence. He sickened at the sight of so much human misery.

5. To become weak to decay; to languish. Plants often sicken and die. All pleasures sicken, and all glories sink.

SCRUPULOUSLY, adv. With a nice regard to minute particulars or to exact propriety.

The duty consists not scrupolously in minutes and half hours. Taylor.

Henry was scrupulously careful not to ascribe the sucess to himself. Addison.

SCRUPULOUSNESS, n. The state or quality of being scrupulous; niceness, exactness or caution in determining or in acting, from a regard to truth, propriety or expedience.

SCRUTABLE, a. [See Scrutiny.] Discoverable by inquiry or critical examination.

SCRUTATION, n. Search; scrutiny.

SCRUTATOR, n. [L. from scrutor.] One that scrutinizes; a close examiner or inquirer.

SCRUTINIZE, v.t. [from scrutiny.] To search closely; to examine or inquire into critically; as, to scrutinize the measures of administration; to scrutinize the private conduct or motives of individuals.

SCRUTINIZED, pp. Examined closely.

SCURTINIZING, ppr. Inquiring into with critical minuteness or exactness.

SCRUTINIZER, n. One who examines with critical care.

SCRUTINOUS, a. Closely inquiring or examining; captious.

SCRUTINY, n. [L. scrutinium, from scrutor, to search closely, to pry into.]

1. Close search; minute inquiry; critical examinatiion; as a scrutiny of votes; narrower scrutiny. In the heat of debate, observations may escape a prudent man which will not bear the test of scrutiny.

2. In the primitive church, an examination of catechumens in the last week of Lent, who were to receive baptism on Easter-day. This was performed with prayers, exorcisms and many other ceremonies.

3. In the canon law, a ticket or little paper billet on which a vote is written.

SCRUTOIR, n. A kind of desk, case of drawers or cabinet, with a lid opening downward for the convenience of writing on it.

SCRUZE, v.t. To crowd; to squeeze.

SCUD, v.i.

1. In a gereral sense, to be driven or to flee or fly with haste. In seamen’s language, to be driven with precipitation before a tempest. This is done with a sail extended on the foremast of the ship, or when the wind is too violent, without any sail set, which is called scudding under bare poles.

2. To run with precipitation; to fly.

SCUD, n.

1. A low thin cloud, or thin clould driven by the wind.

2. A driving along; a rushing with precipitation.

SCUDDING, ppr. Driving or being driven before a tempest; running with fleetness.

SCUDDLE, v.i. To run with a kind of affected haste; commonly pronounced scuttle.

SCUFFLE, n. [This is a different orthography of shuffle; from shove, or its root.]

1. A contention or trial of strength between two persons, who embrace each other’s bodies; a struggle with close embrace, to decide which shall throw the other; in distinction from from wrestling, which is a trial of strength and dexterity at arm’s lenght. Among our common people, it is not unusual for two persons to commence a contest by wrestling, and at last close in, as it is called, and decide the contest by a scuffle.

2. A confused contest; a tumultuous struggle for victory or superiority; a fight.

The dog leaps upon the serpent and tears it to pieces; but in the scuffle, the cradle happened to be overturned. L’ Estrange.


1. To strive or struggle with close embrace, as two men or boys,

2. To strive or contend tumultuously, as small parties.

A gallant man prefers to fight to great disadvantages in the field, in an orderly way, rather than to scuffle with an undisciplined rabble. K. Charles.

SCUFFLER, n. One who scuffles.

SCUFFLING, ppr. Striving for superiority with close embrace; struggling for contending without order.

SCUG, v.t. To hide.

SCULK, v.i. To retire into a close or covered place for concealment; to lurl; to lie close from shame, fear of injury or detection.

No news of Phyl! the bridegroom came, and thought his bride had sculk’d for shame. Swift.

And sculk behind the subterfuge of art. Prior.

SCULKER, n. A lurker; one that lies close for hiding.

SCULKING, ppr. Withdrawing into a close or covered place for concealment; lying close.


1. The brain pan.

2. A boat; a cock boat.

3. One who scull a boat. But properly.

4. A short oar, whose loom is only equal in length to half the breadth of the boat to be rowed, so that one man can manage two, one on each side.

5. A shoal or multitude of fish.

SCULL, v.t. To impel a boat by moving and turning an oar over the stern.

SCULLCAP [See Skull-cap.]


1. A boat rowed by one man with two sculls or short oars.

2. One that sculls, or rows with sculls; one that impels a boat by an oar over the stern.

SCULLERY, n. [probably from the root of shell, scale, G. schale, a scale, a shell, a dish or cup. Skulls and shells were the cups, bowls and siches or rude men.] A place where dishes, kettles and other culinary utensils are kept.

SCULLION, n. A servant taht cleans pots and kettles, and does other menial services in the kitchen.

SCULLIONLY, a. Like a scullion; base; low; mean.

SCULP, v.t. [L. sculpo, scalpo.] To carve; to engrave.

SCULPTILE, a. [L. sculptilis,] Formed by carving; as sculptile images.

SCULPTOR, n. [L. See Sculp.] One whose occupation is to carve wood or stone int images; a carver.

SCULPTURE, n. [L. sculptura.]

1. The art of carving, cutting or hewing wood or stone into images of men, beasts or other things. Sculpture is a generic term, including carving or statuary and engraving.

2. Carved work.

There too, in living sculpture, might be seen The mad affection of the Cretan queen. Dryden.

3. The art of engraving on copper.

SCULPTURE, v.t. To carve; to engrave; to form images or figures with the chisel on wood, stone or metal.

SCULPTURED, pp. Carved; engraved; as a sculptured vase; sculptured marble.

SCULPTURING, ppr. Carving; engraving.

SCUM, n.

1. The extraneous matter or impurities which rise to the surface of liquors in boiling or fermentation, or which form on the surface by other means. The word is also applied to the scoria of metals.

2. The refuse; the recrement; that which is vile or worthless.

The great and the innocent are insulted by the scum and refuse of the people. Addison.

SCUM, v.t. To take the scum from; to clear off the impure matter from the surface; to skim.

You that scum the molten lead. Dryden.

SCUMBER, n. The dung of the fox.

SCUMMED, pp. Cleaned of scum; skimmed.

SCUMMER, n. An instrument used for taking off the scum of liquors; a skimmer.

SCUMMING, ppr. Clearing of scum; slimming.

SCUMMINGS, n. The matter skimmed from boiling liquors; as the scummings of the boiling house.

SCUPPER, n. The scuppers or scupper holes of a ship, are channels cut through the water ways and sides of a ship at proper distances, and lined with lead for carrying off the water from the deck.

SCUPPER-HOSE, n. A lethern pipe attached to the mouth of the scuppers of the lower deck of a ship, to prevent the water from entering.

SCUPPER-NAIL, n. A nail with a very broad head for covering a large surface of the hose.

SCUPPER-PLUG, n. A plug to stop a scupper.

SCURF, n. [L. scorbutus.]

1. A dry military scab or crust formed on the skin of an animal.

2. The soil or foul remains of any thing adherent; as the scurf of crimes. [Not common nor elegant.] Dryden.

3. Any thing adhering to the surface.

There stood a hill, whose grisly top Shone with a glossy scurf. Milton.

SCURFF, n. Another name for the bulltrout.

SCURFINESS, n. The state of being scurfy.


1. Having scurf; covered with scurf.

2. Resembling scurf.

SCURRIL, a. [L. scurrilis, from scurra ,a buffoon.] Such as befits a buffoon or vulgar jester; low; mean; grossly opprobrious in language; scurrilour; as scurril jests; scurril scoffing; scurril taunts.

SCURRILITY, n. [L. scurrilitas.] Such low. vulgar, indecent or abusive language as is used by mean fellows, buffoons, jesters and the like; grossness of reproach or invective; obscene jests, etc.

Banish scurrility and profaneness. Dryden.


1. Using the low and indecent language of the meaner sort of people, or such as only the licence of buffoons can warrant; as a scurrilous fellow.

2. Containing low indecency or abuse; mean; foul; vile; obscenely jocular; as scurrilous language.

SCURRILOUSLY, adv. With gross reproach; with low indecent language.

It is barbarous incivility, scurrilously to sport with what others count religion. Tillotson.

SCURRILOUSNESS, n. Indecency of language; vulgarity; baseness of manners.

SCURVILY, adv. [from scurvy.] Basely; meanly; with coarse and vulgar incivility.

The clergy were never more learned, or so scurvily treated. Swift.

SCURVINESS, n. [from scurvy.] The state of being scurvy.

SCURVOGEL, n. A Brazilian fowl of the stork kind, the jabiru guacu.

SCURVY, n. [from scurf; scurvy for scurfy; Low L. scorbutus.] A disease characterized by great debility, a pale bloated face, bleeding spongy gums, large livid tumors on the body, offensive breath, aversion to exercise, oppression at the breast or difficult respiration, a smooth, dry, shining skin, etc.; a disease most incident to persons who live confined, or on salted meats without fresh vegetables in cold climates.


1. Scurfy; covered or affected by scurf or scabs; scabby; diseased with scurvy.

2. Vile; mean; low; vulgar; worthless; contemptible; as a scurvy fellow.

He spoke scurvy and provoking terms. Shak.

That scurvy custom of taking tobacco. Swift.

SCURVY-GRASS, n. A plant of the genus Cochlearia; spoonwort. It grows on rocks near the sea, has an acrid, bitter taste, and is remarkable as a remedy for the scurvy. It is eaten raw as a salad.

SCUSES, for excuses.

SCUT, n. The tail of a hare or other animal whose tail is short.

SCUTAGE, n. [Law L. scutagium, from scutum, a shield.] In English history, a tax or contributiion levied upon those who held lands by knight service; originally, a composition for personal service which the tenant owed to his lord, but afterward levied as an assessment. Blackstone.

SCUTCHEON, A contractiion of escutcheon, which see.

SCUTE, n. [L. scutum, a buckler.] A french gold coin of 3s. 4d. sterling.

SCUTELLATED, a. [L. scutella, a dish. See Scuttle.] Formed like a pan; divided into small surfaces; as the scutellated bone of a sturgeon.

SCUTIFORM, a. [L. scutum, a buckler, and form.] Having a form of a buckler or shield.

SCUTTLE, n. [L. scutella, a pan or saucer.] A broad shallow basket; so called from its resemblance to a dish.


1. In ships, a small hatchway or opening in the deck, large enough to admit a man, and with a lid for covering it; also, a like hole in the side of a ship, and through the coverings of her hatchways, etc.

2. A square hole in the roof of a house, with a lid.

3. [from scud, and properly scuddle.] A quick pace; a short run.

SCUTTLE, v.i. To run with affected precipitation.
SCUTTLE, v.t. [from the noun.]

1. To cut large holes through the bottom or sides of a ship for any purpose.

2. To sink by making holes through the bottom; as, to scuttle a ship.

SCUTTLE-BUTT, n. A butt or cask having a square piece sawn out of its lilge, and lashed

SCUTTLE-CASK, upon deck.

SCUTTLED, pp. Having holes made in the bottom or sides; sunk by means of cutting holes in the bottom or side.

SCUTTLE-FISH, n. The cuttle-fich, so called. [See Cuttle-fish.]

SCUTTLING, ppr. Cutting holes in the bottom or sides; sinking by such holes.

SCYTALE, n. A species of serpent.

SCYTHE, A wrong spelling. [See Sythe.]

SCYTHIAN, a. Pretaining to Scythia, a name given to the northern part of Asia, and Europe adjoining to Asia.

SCYTHIAN, n. [See Scot.] A native of Scythia.

SDAIN, for disdain. [Not in use.]

SDEINFUL, for disdainful. [Not in use.]

SEA, n. see. [This word, like lake, signifies primarily a seat, set or lay, a repository, a bason.]

1. A large bason, cisternor laver which Solomon made in the temple, so large as to contain more than six thousand gallons. This was called the brazen sea, and used to hold water for the priests to wash themselves. 1 Kings 7:23-25; 2 Chronicles 4:2-6.

2. A large body of water, nearly inclosed by land, as the Baltic or the Mediterranean; as the sea of Azof. Seas are properly branches of the ocean, and upon the same level. Large bodies of water inland, and situated above the level of the ocean, are lakes. The appellation of sea, given to the Caspian lake, is an exception, and not very correct. So the lake of Galilee is called a sea, from the Greek.

3. The ocean; as, to go to sea. The fleet is at sea, or on the high seas.

4. A wave; a billow; a surge. The vessel shipped a sea.

5. The swell of the ocean in a tempest, or the direction of the waves; as, we head the sea.

6. Proverbially, a large quantity of liquor; as a sea of blood.

7. A rough or agitated place or element.

In a troubled sea of passion tost. Milton.

SEA-ANEMONY, n. The animal flower, which see.

SEA-APE, n. [sea and ape.] The name given to a marine animal which plays tricks like an ape.

SEA-BANK, n. [sea and bank.]

1. The sea shore.

2. A bank or mole to defend against the sea.

SEA-BAR, n. [sea and bar.] The sea-swallow.

SEA-BAT, n. [sea and bat.] A sort of flying fish.

SEA-BATHED, a. [sea and bathe.] Bathed dipped or washed in the sea.

SEA-BEAR, n. [sea and bear.] An animal of the bear kind that frequents the sea; the white or polar bear; also, the ursine seal.

SEA-BEARD, n. [sea and beard.] A marine plant.

SEA-BEAST, n. [sea and beast.] A beast or monstrous animal of the sea.

SEA-BEAT, a. [sea and beat.] Beaten by the sea; lashed by the waves.


Along the sea-beat shore. Pope

SEABORD, n. The sea shore.

SEABOARD, adv. Towards the sea.