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Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English scratten. Origin uncertain; apparently related to Swedish kratta (to rake).


scrat (third-person singular simple present scrats, present participle scratting, simple past and past participle scratted)

  1. (obsolete) To scratch, to use one's nails or claws.
    • 1624, Democritus Junior [pseudonym; Robert Burton], The Anatomy of Melancholy: [], 2nd edition, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Printed by John Lichfield and James Short, for Henry Cripps, OCLC 54573970:
      , New York Review of Books, 2001, p.286:
      Euclio [] as he went from home, seeing a crow scrat upon the muck-hill, returned in all haste, taking it for malum omen, an ill sign […].
  2. (obsolete, Britain) To rake; to search.
    • 1978, A.S. Byatt, The Virgin in The Garden, Vintage International 1992, p.89
      He himself had scratted in the thin dust of evangelical tracts.

Etymology 2[edit]

Compare Old English scritta (a hermaphrodite), Aguano scrut (a scrub, a low, mean person).


scrat (plural scrats)

  1. (obsolete) A hermaphrodite.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Skinner to this entry?)

Etymology 3[edit]

Compare German Schratt and Old Norse skratti.


scrat (plural scrats)

  1. (obsolete) A devil.
Related terms[edit]

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for scrat in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)