From Middle English scaffold, scaffalde, from Norman, from Old French schaffaut, eschaffaut, eschafal, eschaiphal, escadafaut (“platform to see a tournament”) (Modern French échafaud) (compare Latin scadafale, scadafaltum, scafaldus, scalfaudus, Danish skafot, Dutch and Middle Dutch schavot, German schavot, schavott, Occitan escadafalc), from Old French es- (“indicating movement away or separation”) (from Latin ex- (“out, away”)) + chafaud, chafaut, chafault, caafau, caafaus, cadefaut (“scaffold for executing a criminal”), from Vulgar Latin *catafalcum (“viewing stage”) (whence English catafalque, French catafalque, Occitan cadafalc, Old Catalan cadafal, Italian catafalco, Spanish cadafalso (obsolete), cadahalso, cadalso, Portuguese cadafalso), possibly from Ancient Greek κατα- (kata-, “back; against”) + Latin -falicum (from fala, phala (“wooden gallery or tower; siege tower”)).
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈskæfəʊld/
- (General American) IPA(key): /ˈskæfəld/, /ˈskæfld/
- Hyphenation: scaf‧fold
scaffold (plural scaffolds)
- A structure made of scaffolding for workers to stand on while working on a building.
- An elevated platform on which a criminal is executed.
- (metalworking) An accumulation of adherent, partly fused material forming a shelf or dome-shaped obstruction above the tuyeres in a blast furnace.