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See also: scût



A European hare (Lepus europaeus) with a white scut (sense 2)
The scut (sense 2) of a male roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) in the Tiergehege Tannenberg (Tannenberg Animal Reserve) in Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English scut (hare);[1] further etymology uncertain, possibly related to Middle English scut, scute (short), possibly from Old French escorter, escurter, or Latin excurtāre, scurtāre,[2][3][4] from curtō (to cut short, shorten), from curtus (short; shortened) (from Proto-Indo-European *(s)ker- (to cut off)) + . A derivation from Old Norse skut, skutr (stern of a boat), or Icelandic skott (animal's tail) is thought to be unlikely.[3]

As to sense 3 (“the female pudenda, the vulva”), see the letter of 5 June 1875 from Joseph Crosby to Joseph Parker Norris published in One Touch of Shakespeare (1986).[5]


scut (plural scuts)

  1. (obsolete) A hare; (hunting, also figuratively) a hare as the game in a hunt.
  2. A short, erect tail, as of a hare, rabbit, or deer.
  3. (by extension) The buttocks or rump; also, the female pudenda, the vulva.
    • 1750, “Ge ho, Dobbin or the Waggoner”, in The Tulip, page 2:
      I rumpled her Feathers, and tickled her Scut, / And play'd the round Rubbers at two handed Put.
    • 1938, Norman Lindsay, chapter XVII, in Age of Consent, London: T[homas] Werner Laurie [], →OCLC, page 177:
      Put on your dress, ye shameless witch, standin' there in your pelt I'll take a strap to, for havin' the conceit out of you, for by your idling had lost me the sup of gin to keep the breath of life in me. Cover your scut, or I'll welt the skin off it.
    • a. 1968, Keith Roberts, “The Lady Margaret”, in Gardner Dozois, editor, Modern Classics of Science Fiction, New York, N.Y.: St. Martin’s Griffin, St. Martin’s Press, published 1993, →ISBN, page 233:
      So … so she show you her pretty li'l scut, he? Jesse, you are a lad; when will you learn?
    • 1997, Charles Frazier, “To Live Like a Gamecock”, in Cold Mountain: A Novel, New York, N.Y.: Grove Press, →ISBN, page 216:
      One of the sisters backed up to the fire and hiked up the tail of her dress and bent over and thrust out her scut to it and stared at Inman with a look of glazed pleasure in her blue eyes.
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

See also[edit]

(animal's hind end):

Etymology 2[edit]

Uncertain, possibly a variant of scout ((obsolete except Scotland) contemptible person), possibly related to scout (to reject with contempt; to scoff), from a North Germanic language; compare Old Norse skúta, skúte (a taunt), probably from Proto-Germanic *skeutaną (to shoot),[6][7] from Proto-Indo-European *(s)kewd- (to shoot; to throw). Compare Old Norse skútyrði, skotyrði (abusive language).[6]


scut (plural scuts)

  1. (chiefly Ireland, colloquial) A contemptible person.
    Synonyms: see Thesaurus:git
    • 1938, Norman Lindsay, Age of Consent, 1st Australian edition, Sydney, N.S.W.: Ure Smith, published 1962, →OCLC, page 195:
      "I'll have no more of it. I'll have no more Dinny Ryans handlin' flesh and blood of my gettin'. Ye'd see me dyin' for a sup of drink to give me peace, and you philanderin' and danderin' with yon scut of a fellow, and worse doin's behind that, if the truth is told."
    • 1947, Paul Vincent Carroll, The Wise Have Not Spoken: A Drama in Three Acts (French’s Acting Edition; no. 308), London: French, →OCLC; republished New York, N.Y.: Dramatists Play Service, 1954, →OCLC, Act III, scene i, page 49:
      She didn't need a new dress! Me money! Me hard earned three hundred that I scraped and scrimped for. Me scut of a daughter puttin' it on her back in finery.
    • 1993, Brian Friel, Dancing at Lughnasa, New York, N.Y.: Dramatists Play Service, →ISBN, Act I, page 14:
      CHRIS. Danny Bradley is a scut, Rose. / ROSE. I never said it was Danny Bradley! / CHRIS. He's a married man with three young children.
    • 1997, John Kessel, “The Pure Product”, in The Pure Product: Stories (Tom Doherty Associates Book), New York, N.Y.: Tor Books, →ISBN; republished in Harry Turtledove, with Martin H[arry] Greenberg, editors, The Best Time Travel Stories of the 20th Century, New York, N.Y.: Del Rey Books, Ballantine Books, 2005, →ISBN, page 322:
      Ruth had snapped open her purse and pulled out a small gun. I grabbed her arm and yanked her into the car; she squawked and her shot went wide. [...] "You scut," she said as we hit the entrance ramp of the interstate. "You're a scut-pumping Conservative. You made me miss."
    • 2005, Dean Whitlock, chapter 12, in Sky Carver, New York, N.Y.: Clarion Books, Houghton Mifflin Company, →ISBN, page 108:
      Fat-headed scut. That's what he is, scut. Thinks he runs the whole river.

Etymology 3[edit]

Uncertain; perhaps related to scut (“contemptible person”):[8] see etymology 2.


scut (countable and uncountable, plural scuts)

  1. (attributively) Distasteful work; drudgery
    Synonyms: see Thesaurus:drudgery
    • 1998, Jonathan Kellerman, chapter 17, in Billy Straight: A Novel, New York, N.Y.: Random House, →ISBN, page 112; republished London: Headline Publishing Group, 2009, →ISBN:
      Let's devote mornings to the scut, do real work in the afternoon.
    • 1999, Catherine Miles Wallace, Dance Lessons: Moving to the Rhythm of a Crazy God, Harrisburg, Pa.: Morehouse Publishing, →ISBN, page 163:
      And the scut of weeding or washing clothes or waiting in the dentist's waiting room or the soccer field parking lot is actually far less brutalizing than the scut of grading freshman essays [...]
    • 2003, Virginia Gayl Salazar, Gone: A Sci Fi about Cloning, New York, N.Y.; Lincoln, Neb.: Writers Club Press, iUniverse, →ISBN, page 144:
      "What if you were called a scut puppy?" / "When I first started I was one. A scut puppy is usually a medical student or a nurse who does menial tasks. That's how a person learns in the beginning. We are under others who will teach us and work our tails off."
    • 2004, Clark Howard, “The Leper Colony”, in Ed Gorman and Martin H[arry] Greenberg, editors, The World’s Finest Mystery and Crime Stories: Fifth Annual Collection (Tom Doherty Associates Book), New York, N.Y.: Tor Books, →ISBN, page 445:
      So they give the people assigned to the Probation Squad every scut case that other squads don't want to handle.
  2. (medicine, slang) Some menial procedure left for a doctor or medical student to complete, sometimes for training purposes.
    • 1999, Patricia L. Dawson, Forged by the Knife: The Experience of Surgical Residency from the Perspective of a Woman of Color, Seattle, Wash.: Open Hand Pub., →ISBN, page 100:
      There's no question that it's sexist. [Female residents] are berated more on rounds, given more scut to do.
Derived terms[edit]

Etymology 4[edit]

Origin unknown; perhaps from scut(tle), or related to Swedish scutla (to leap).[9]


scut (third-person singular simple present scuts, present participle scutting, simple past and past participle scut)

  1. (intransitive, originally Cumbria, East Anglia, Yorkshire) To scamper off.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ scut, n.(1)”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 13 April 2019.
  2. ^ scū̆t(e, adj.”, in MED Online, Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, 2007, retrieved 13 April 2019.
  3. 3.0 3.1 scut, n.1”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, 1911; compare “scut, adj. and n.3”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, 1911.
  4. ^ scut1, n.”, in Lexico,; Oxford University Press, 2019–2022.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Joseph Crosby (5 June 1875), “Letter 55 [to Joseph Parker Norris]”, in John W. Velz and Frances N. Teague, editors, One Touch of Shakespeare: Letters of Joseph Crosby to Joseph Parker Norris, 1875–1878, Washington, D.C.: Folger Books, Folger Shakespeare Library; Cranbury, N.J.; London; Mississauga, Ont.: Associated University Presses, published 1986, →ISBN, page 79: “[C]an there be a doubt that overscutched [in Henry IV, Part 2, Act III, scene ii] means one who hath scutched too much, or used her scut to excess, and that "the overscutched huswives" meant old, played out whores? I think not.”
  6. 6.0 6.1 scut, n.4”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, 1982; “scout, n.2”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, 1911; “scout, v.2”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, 1911.
  7. ^ scut2, n.”, in Lexico,; Oxford University Press, 2019–2022.
  8. ^ scut, n.5”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, 1982; “scutwork, n.”, in Lexico,; Oxford University Press, 2019–2022.
  9. ^ Joseph Wright, editor (1905), “SCUT, v.2 and sb.3”, in The English Dialect Dictionary: [], volume V (R–S), London: Henry Frowde, [], publisher to the English Dialect Society, []; New York, N.Y.: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, →OCLC, page 302, column 1: “To make short, hurried runs; to scamper away; to run without being seen.”




Inherited from Latin scūtum (shield), ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *skei- (to cut, split), an extension of *sek- (to cut).


scut n (plural scuturi)

  1. shield

Related terms[edit]