Main definitions of scout in English

: scout1scout2

scout1

noun

  • 1A soldier or other person sent out ahead of a main force so as to gather information about the enemy's position, strength, or movements.

    • ‘With both reconnaissance scouts dead, Theorton grabbed the assault rifle of one and ducked behind the nearest boulder in sight.’
    • ‘In response, he began sending his advance scouts further afield as they drew closer to the enemy.’
    • ‘The scouts gathered the information they wanted without any excitement, just like the first trip, and turned onto a road that would take them out of town.’
    • ‘A scout ahead of the main group gave Seth the final signal that the men were ready to detonate the charges, by reflecting the sun in a piece of glass.’
    • ‘Collection efforts of the RSTA squadron and infantry battalion scouts should be complementary.’
    • ‘They were to get behind enemy lines and act as scouts and gather intelligence to feed back to British military headquarters.’
    • ‘When scouts reported a river ahead, the army dissolved into a mob and ran for it.’
    • ‘Some units deploy their scouts forward, while others do not.’
    • ‘Now we have sent one of the village's best scouts to gather further information, so that our village will be prepared for an attack.’
    • ‘The surviving M3 tank, along with the scouts, began movement back to the main body of the 45th Infantry.’
    • ‘From here General Custer sent scouts out to ascertain the strength and locality of the enemy.’
    • ‘Gadi sent ahead five scouts and they all came back with reports.’
    • ‘Advance scouts rode ahead into the darkness, but the enemy seemed to have withdrawn.’
    • ‘The Indian scouts attached to Custer's overland force were among the best in the Montana and Wyoming area.’
    • ‘Four days had passed before Lord Light ordered his force to a halt, and sent scouts out ahead to find the disposition of the bridge.’
    • ‘As the soldiers leapt from the boats, Rhia watched them move quickly up the beach, taking up position, sending advance scouts.’
    • ‘Just then, the scouts he had sent ahead, came running back.’
    • ‘Then, Spetnaz troops and scouts were sent ahead of the armor to eliminate RPG-armed snipers.’
    • ‘Because they have night vision capabilities, the snipers can track and engage several enemy scouts during training.’
    • ‘Many Native soldiers were used as reconnaissance scouts and snipers and were very effective at their craft and won much acclaim for their deeds.’
    lookout, lookout man, lookout woman, outrider, advance guard, vanguard, spy
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    1. 1.1usually in singular An instance of gathering information, especially by reconnoitering an area.
      ‘I returned from a lengthy scout around the area’
      • ‘With a preliminary scout of the area and a sketch map, we were someway nearer as to understanding where everything was in relation to each other.’
      • ‘He fancied a scout round Victoria but I told him I preferred Wapping instead.’
      • ‘I want to have a quick scout round.’
      reconnaissance, reconnoitre
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    2. 1.2
      short for talent scout
      • ‘He remained in the Russian League, playing with Dynamo in Moscow, until Sharks scout John Ferguson saw him while on a scouting mission.’
      • ‘Speaking of Ohio State, college rivalries are getting under the skin of some NFL college and regional scouts.’
      • ‘Yes, she is on the Wade Trophy watch list and WNBA scouts have been flocking to her games, but she has virtually no name in the national press.’
      • ‘When scouts study a college cornerback, they look for the potential to play safety.’
      • ‘Mornington were so successful that league clubs sent scouts to watch a number of the players.’
      • ‘Colclough showed improvement throughout the practice week, though he might not be as fast as some scouts thought he was.’
      • ‘I had scouts come and watch me play my junior year.’
      • ‘The 21-year-old Bradford Park Avenue striker was spotted by a college scout while he was a student at East Durham Football Academy.’
      • ‘He has it all which is why major league scouts consider him to be the best all-around player in the game.’
      • ‘My eligibility is hanging by a thread and tons of college basketball scouts are starting to show up.’
      • ‘Udrih is a good ballhandler who impressed scouts with his shooting and play off the pick-and-roll.’
      • ‘I knew the Brandeis shortstop had some scouts looking at him.’
      • ‘And no matter how difficult it may be to discover a future superstar, the scouts are determined to search the globe until they find him.’
      • ‘Did any club scout take any snaps of our activities this year?’
      • ‘An effective scout operates like a detective, working hotel lobbies and press boxes to glean information about players.’
      • ‘NBA scouts will watch him very attentively this season.’
      • ‘I had winter track coming up and I really needed to be in good shape, this was the year that all of the college scouts would be looking at me.’
      • ‘Clubs employ scouts who work their whole lives to unearth such gems, so why are they then treated so casually?’
      • ‘And in the estimation of one rival scout, the Cubs ‘didn't give up much of anything.’’
      • ‘While his arm strength is considered good, Rodgers threw the ball downfield twice in the four games the scout watched.’
      talent spotter, talent scout, recruiter
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  • 2A ship or aircraft employed for reconnaissance, especially a small, fast aircraft.

    • ‘The Germans had developed some new techniques - one of which was to have several layers of scouts flying in close formation, one on top of another.’
    • ‘We sent a picket ship as a scout, your government destroyed half of it, and stole all the remains.’
    • ‘We will also see a significant increase in the number of scouts to man UA reconnaissance formations.’
    • ‘There are thirty fighters, two scouts, ten bombers, and three long range fighters.’
    • ‘It can direct close air support missions, act as a killer scout on the battlefield and help protect friendly troops.’
    • ‘Of course, that suggestion had been shot down faster than a Spectral scout.’
    • ‘The insignia depicted the head of an Indian scout wearing a helmet peering through a cloud, signifying the squadron's role as an aerial scout for the Army.’
  • 3A Boy Scout or Girl Scout.

    • ‘The ambulanceman claims it was learning first aid in the Cubs and Scouts that triggered his long and varied career in the front line.’
    • ‘He told the Gazette that there was no shortage of boys and girls in the Cubs and Scouts, only of adult helpers.’
    • ‘Hundreds of Scouts and Guides marked the ceremonial highlight of their year with a St George's Day parade.’
    • ‘He was first bitten by the climbing bug as a 10-year-old scout.’
    • ‘Years later, I was an active member of the local Scout movement.’
    • ‘The challenge runs until April and the Cub Scouts and Scouts' efforts will go towards their Global Conservation badge.’
    • ‘The teenager had progressed through the Cubs and Scouts to become a Venture Scout.’
    • ‘The Scout group has ten Cubs and 16 Beavers, both boys and girls, and there is a waiting list for new members.’
    • ‘Former eagle scout Clint Lawton stopped pursuing a business major when he learned that Brigham Young University offered a new major: Scouting.’
    • ‘York City Scouts had also booked the rink last night for hundreds of Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and leaders.’
    • ‘Guides now number 24 and Brownies 20; but there are no Cubs or Scouts due to lack of leaders.’
    • ‘He plans to return to the Dominican Republic this summer with a group of Scouts to build another clinic and a unit for children with special needs.’
    • ‘The scouts applied for the program and each Girl Scout council could recommend only one girl.’
    • ‘An organization called Scouting for All was cofounded by a young heterosexual scout named Steven Cozza and his father, Scott Cozza.’
    • ‘From 7pm Brownies, Cubs, Scouts and Guides from the York area will take to the stage for the gang show.’
    • ‘She helped out with the local Scout group and was a very active member.’
    • ‘Congratulations were also passed on to leaders and Scouts who received awards this year.’
    • ‘Its function has much in common with the formal groups like Brownies or Scouts but is not identical.’
    • ‘The success comes in the same month that the group also won a local Scout award for the only the second time in 32 years.’
    • ‘I am also a Cub Leader in my spare time, which came about after I finished Scouts and stayed on to help out with the younger kids.’
    • ‘Many local organisations are taking part, such as the Scouts, Guides and Brownies.’
    • ‘The party of local Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, leaders and family members made the journey by coach.’
    • ‘The cash will be used to renovate the Scout building, also used by Cubs, Brownies, Guides and Venture Scouts.’
    • ‘A group of Scouts rolled up their sleeves to wash cars and raise cash for archery equipment at the same time.’
    • ‘Bowling newspaper publisher Dan McDonough, also a Boy Scout official, tells about the two scouts who went bowling for the first time.’
    • ‘Despite these odds, any good scout knows the value of being prepared, and it only makes sense to select a folding knife for daily carry with the capacity for defensive use in mind.’
  • 4A domestic worker at a college at Oxford University.

  • 5dated, informal A man or boy.

    ‘I've got nothing against Harrison—he's a good scout’

verb

[NO OBJECT]
  • 1Make a search for someone or something in various places.

    ‘I was sent to scout around for a place to park the camper’
    ‘we scouted for clues’
    • ‘Head to the market for tiny gourds and bunches of berries or scout in the backyard for some shapely branches with character.’
    • ‘Do you remember back in March we asked you to scout around at home for any old mobile phones and printer cartridges to recycle?’
    • ‘Under the watchful eyes of promoters and fans, she moved nimbly around semifinal competitor Stephanie Thomas and scouted for an opening.’
    • ‘Once our three years is up, we scout around for the best deal and re-mortgage again, if necessary.’
    • ‘The policy should simplify the funding process for film-makers who previously had to scout around for money from various departments project by project.’
    • ‘Observe the effectiveness of transgenic hybrids and insecticide control methods and learn how to dig roots and scout for rootworm larvae.’
    • ‘‘It has all meant that we had to scout around for players to fill the gaps and it's not an easy task,’ he said.’
    • ‘I was five minutes early so I scouted for a good spot on the beach.’
    • ‘Hawaiian ecologists have long scouted for invading brown tree snakes, which occasionally stow away on planes landing in Honolulu.’
    • ‘Hadman intends to scout around this weekend to establish the extent of the crisis.’
    • ‘Some newly seeded stands may be hurt if not scouted for leafhoppers.’
    • ‘He scouted for legal jobs in Washington, DC but received no offers.’
    • ‘I scouted for a spot, realizing in vast horror the only place open was next to Uncle Al.’
    • ‘I'm going to scout around for a while and make sure there aren't any thieves.’
    • ‘It's time for you to pack your bags and scout for another job!’
    • ‘This also gets your foot in the door so you can scout around their home to see if they have any additional art or framing needs that your business could meet.’
    • ‘He scouted for a new location and found the 28-acre Napier Garden facility ideal for the purpose.’
    • ‘I scouted for evidence of a stuck or injured fox, but found nothing.’
    • ‘Lexi asked about this as they scouted for any wild dogs that might ruin their hunt.’
    • ‘In fact, that was the Congress' Achilles heel as it scouted for more supporters.’
    search, look, hunt, cast about, cast around, cast round, ferret, ferret about, ferret around, root about, root around
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 (especially of a soldier) go ahead of a main force so as to gather information about an enemy's position, strength, or movements.
      • ‘We were only about 3 km outside the roadblocks around the Forêt but were not detected by enemy patrols scouting widely throughout the area.’
      • ‘Clement halted his army and signaled for his scout to ride ahead of the army to scout for enemies ahead.’
      • ‘I have several teams of men out scouting for information that might lead us to him.’
      • ‘The Federal forces at Helena in the summer of 1862 did little more than scout within a forty - to fifty-mile radius of the river city.’
      • ‘One of the posthumous VCs, with another rifleman, was scouting ahead of a strong fighting patrol.’
      • ‘The men are sent out on patrol to scout out the enemy position.’
      • ‘Quickly flicking the C stick down will activate the gadget, and it often comes in quite handy while scouting for enemy soldiers.’
      • ‘As fire burned from where the bunkers once stood, Joe's remaining troops went ahead to scout for any enemy forces left.’
      • ‘Born on a Cherokee reservation, Threepersons scouted for Gen. Blackjack Pershing on his expedition after Pancho Villa in 1916.’
      • ‘In addition the crusaders used light cavalry and horse archers in large numbers to harass the enemy, to scout, and to supplement the knights.’
      • ‘Slaves helped Unionists evade conscription, and both groups spied and scouted for Federal troops.’
    2. 1.2with object Explore or examine (a place or area of business) so as to gather information about it.
      ‘American companies are keen to scout out business opportunities’
      • ‘Although specimens have occasionally been found here, I have not thoroughly scouted this area, and a more extensive investigation could be productive.’
      • ‘There were three of us who left the field together and scouted the park for we had never seen it empty.’
      • ‘He has spent the week down in Nicaragua, scouting real estate investment possibilities.’
      • ‘Wilmer found and fell in love with his studio, a former warehouse, on his first day scouting business space in Sausalito.’
      • ‘The project is now scouting summit sites in areas with large exoffender populations and plans to hold five summits by the end of 2005.’
      • ‘When you are scouting an area, a GPS is the perfect tool for mapping and relocating roosting areas and routes.’
      • ‘Once an enterprising hornet scouts out a bee colony, it marks the nest with a type of bodily chemical substance called a pheromone.’
      • ‘Producers should scout fields and determine if the action threshold has been exceeded.’
      • ‘First, it developed an unmanned small helicopter to scout dangerous terrain.’
      • ‘He had scouted the place the previous evening in preparation for today's shoot.’
      • ‘The airline is scouting new areas for market expansion in the region and has singled out St Lucia.’
      • ‘We will actually scout a place many times, checking it out in the daytime and night-time.’
      • ‘Putting that aside, I scouted the room for people I knew, slightly reassured to see Jane.’
      • ‘Those on foot will be in the middle with some more experienced rangers ahead of us scouting out the land.’
      • ‘Schools are proposed to grant high-tech degrees while businessmen scout various ports to set up shore-based facilities.’
      • ‘I'd scouted the area last month and found two possibilities.’
      • ‘The screenwriter is expected to deliver a first draft of the script this month, about the time Donner will be scouting locations in France.’
      • ‘He looked down to the town below them, nervously scouting the streets for a sign of the men they had seen last night.’
      • ‘There was a dispute over what to do in the morning - scout out the surrounding area, or put everyone to work building a settlement.’
      • ‘Last year, I scouted this photo location near Griffith Park.’
      reconnoitre, explore, take a look at, make a reconnaissance of, inspect, investigate, spy out, survey, make a survey of
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    3. 1.3 Look for suitably talented people for recruitment to one's own organization or sports team.
      ‘Johnson has been scouting for the Pirates’
      • ‘After his playing days were over, he fanned in Iowa, and scouted for the White Sox.’
      • ‘In his final year of junior hockey and still a free agent, several NHL teams have scouted him and he hopes to get an NHL tryout next fall.’
      • ‘He also scouted for the Padres and Angels, and served an executive stint with the Oakland A's after the 1982 season.’
      • ‘He chose to scout some of the team's top minor leaguers rather than attend the World Series.’
      • ‘At one time, the team was scouting top cornerbacks.’
      • ‘There are many people from outside the U.S. involved in scouting or evaluating talent all over the world.’
      • ‘The idea is not to scout for talented cricketers for the Indian women's team but to make women come out of their homes and play the game.’
      • ‘It's a decision Kindler makes based on the talent he scouts at the festival.’
      • ‘He also scouted for the Pirates and recommended the drafting of Roberto Clemente.’
      • ‘I'm not sure if he's scouting future talent or having a little professorial fun with us.’
      • ‘All 16 drivers have been selected through the Red Bull Driver Search Programme, which scouts out young talent from all corners of the globe.’
      • ‘In his retirement he lived in Dorset where - as a keen football fan - he scouted for Bournemouth and Dorchester football clubs.’
      • ‘He scouted for the Pirates from 1950 to 1988, and then for the Astros for five more years.’
      • ‘The music director spoke of his keen interest in programmes that scouted for new voices.’
      • ‘Bush scouted for the Oilers from 1987 through 1991 then coached the teams' linebackers from 1992 through 1994.’
      • ‘After spending the last three years scouting for clubs in the Football League, Roscrow has amassed a vast knowledge of the non-league scene.’
      • ‘If Missouri loses a great prospect or two because other teams are scouting and making living-room pitches, the impact will linger.’
      • ‘The team says it scouted both pitchers heavily.’
      • ‘That made NBA teams a little wary of him, especially teams that want to scout in China.’
      • ‘At the same time, they'll be scouting out potential talent for their live music venues.’

Phrases

  • Scout's honor

    • 1The oath taken by a Boy Scout or Girl Scout.

      1. 1.1informal Used to indicate that one has the same honorable standards associated with Scouts and so will stand by a promise or tell the truth.
        • ‘I'll be there tomorrow night, Scout's honor!’
        • ‘‘Okay, I won't do anything irrational,’ I said as I lifted up my hands, put up my first two fingers and folded the rest back,‘Scout's honour.’’
        • ‘He'll watch his mouth next time, Scout's honor.’

Origin

Late Middle English (as a verb): from Old French escouter ‘listen’, earlier ascolter, from Latin auscultare. scout (sense 5 of the noun) (early 18th century) is of uncertain origin.

Pronunciation

scout

/skout//skaʊt/

Main definitions of scout in English

: scout1scout2

scout2

verb

[WITH OBJECT]rare
  • Reject (a proposal or idea) with scorn.

    • ‘Despite her tender letters to her guru, he sensibly scouts the idea that the two were lovers.’

Origin

Early 17th century: of Scandinavian origin; compare with Old Norse skúta, skúti ‘a taunt’.

Pronunciation

scout

/skout//skaʊt/