Main definitions of scarify in English

: scarify1scarify2

scarify1

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1Cut and remove debris from (a lawn) with a scarifier.

    • ‘Avoid scarifying lawns with live moss in them as it will cause the problem to spread.’
    • ‘It is a good idea to scarify the lawn and remove any thatch, as it restricts air movement, impedes drainage and encourages the formation of moss and weeds.’
    • ‘It's a good time to scarify lawns and remove the dead grass called thatch.’
    • ‘After the lawn is mended, it can be scarified to remove debris and thatch, which is a layer of material that builds up on the surface of the soil.’
    • ‘Continue to scarify lawns with a wire-tined lawn rake.’
    • ‘Thatch removal is done by scarifying the grass.’
    • ‘On a dry day, scarify the lawn to remove unwanted thatch and then aerate and top-dress any badly drained areas.’
    1. 1.1 Break up the surface of (soil or a road or pavement).
      • ‘We seem to be scarifying sites much earlier after harvesting, now as fast as two to three months later.’
      • ‘It is expected that it should be able to rip ice to the same depth it scarifies soil.’
      • ‘They intend to scarify the top layer to a depth of a few inches prior to next season.’
      • ‘Reverse is better for controlled cutting, pulverizing clods, sorting debris from soil, and scarifying hard ground.’
      • ‘If dethatching is required, use an iron rake or a thatch rake (also known as a scrake) to cut through and rake off thatch, and to scarify the surface.’
      • ‘Add attachments, and you can also scarify hard ground, rip up asphalt, and doze construction materials.’
      • ‘Seedling counts show 11,000 to 22,000 white birch seedlings per acre where the ground was scarified and no seedlings where it was not.’
  • 2Make shallow incisions in (the skin), especially as a medical procedure or traditional cosmetic practice:

    ‘she scarified the snakebite with a paring knife’
    • ‘In the past, mild acids, or salt were used to scarify the skin but the scar could be as undesirable as the tattoo.’
    • ‘This surface effect gives his drawings yet another bodily reference, perhaps unintended, in its resemblance to scarified skin.’
    • ‘Thus, in Papua New Guinea the Kendengei people of the Sepik ritually scarify adolescent men.’
    • ‘I also recall an unfortunate Laotian woman who scarified her back in an attempt to treat her menstrual problems.’
  • 3Criticize severely and hurtfully:

    ‘he scarified our leading politicians, seizing upon their vulnerable points’
    • ‘From information released he seemingly has scarified both his Irish and Manchester colleagues.’
    • ‘I was blackballed and blacklisted, vilified and scarified and was reduced to having to go incognito to Cleary's of Ballycroy to enjoy a pint or three.’
    • ‘A staunch Wicklow supporter, he has been scarified for hoisting the Dublin colours in Balto.’
    • ‘However, I don't want to scarify the community's open discussion just for those annoying spams.’
    • ‘He went on to scarify the same companies for being only interested in putting on the tried and the tested to the exclusion of modern works by Irish writers and composers.’

Origin

Late Middle English: from Old French scarifier, via late Latin from Greek skariphasthai scratch an outline, from skariphos stylus.

Pronunciation

scarify

/ˈskarɪfʌɪ//ˈskɛːrɪfʌɪ/

Main definitions of scarify in English

: scarify1scarify2

scarify2

verb

[WITH OBJECT]usually as adjective scarifying
informal
  • Frighten:

    ‘a scarifying mix of extreme violence and absurdist humour’
    • ‘The English novelist responsible for the most scarifying account of literary humiliation ever put into print died a hundred years ago this month.’
    frighten, make afraid, make fearful, make nervous, panic, throw into a panic
    View synonyms

Origin

Late 18th century: formed irregularly from scare, perhaps on the pattern of terrify.

Pronunciation

scarify

/ˈskɛːrɪfʌɪ/