backscratch (plural backscratches)
- A scratch on the back.
1931, The Mines Magazine, volume 21, page 9:
- Several Colorado papers have reproduced the substance of our articles on silver, and we thank them for their backscratches.
1989, Common Lives, Lesbian Lives, number 29-32, page 20:
- Backscratches keep improving but the itch increases.
2011, Denise Giardina, The Unquiet Earth: A Novel:
- I had to admit he had nice fingernails and a backscratch would have felt just fine.
2013, Ben Undelson, Fiction. A Nostalgic Guide to Growing up with the WWF:
- Series of clotheslines no-sold, so Haku tries backscratches, and, interestingly, that finally works.
- To scratch one's or another's back.
1984, Michael D. Powers, Behavioral Assessment of Severe Developmental Disabilities:
- He enjoyed being hugged, backscratched, and tickled and sat quietly next to the examiner after testing while a parental interview was conducted.
1995, Stephen R. Kellert, The Biophilia Hypothesis, page 397:
- So it is to the mutual advantage of social primates to backscratch for each other.
2000, David Michael Jacobs, UFOs and Abductions: Challenging the Borders of Knowledge, page 190:
- […] primate's inclination to backscratch and delouse rather than venture into the dangerous country beyond familiar tramping grounds.
- (business, politics, slang) To engage in a reciprocal action.
2003, Ralph Steadman, Doodaaa: The Balletic Art of Gavin Twinge, page 105:
- It was backscratched into existence, cost nearly a billion pounds, and now they are wondering why they let it happen.
2008, Nicholas Fearn, The Latest Answers to the Oldest Questions:
- The fount of social problems, he argues, is that human morality grew out of the natural principles of tit-for-tat and mutual backscratching.
2007, Jeffrey M. Elliot, The Presidential-Congressional Political Dictionary, page 178:
- Whether referred to as bargaining, logrolling, or backscratching, the effect is the same: "you support me, I'll support you."