AskDefine | Define scrub

Dictionary Definition

scrub adj : (of domestic animals) not selectively bred


1 dense vegetation consisting of stunted trees or bushes [syn: chaparral, bush]
2 the act of cleaning a surface by rubbing it with a brush and soap and water [syn: scrubbing, scouring]


1 clean with hard rubbing; "She scrubbed his back" [syn: scour]
2 wash thoroughly; "surgeons must scrub prior to an operation" [syn: scrub up] [also: scrubbing, scrubbed]

User Contributed Dictionary





  1. Mean; dirty; contemptible; scrubby.
    "How solitary, how scrub, does this town look!" -Walpole.
    "No little scrub joint shall come on my board." -Swift.

Derived terms

  • Scrub game a game, as of ball, by unpracticed players.
  • Scrub race a race between scrubs, or between untrained animals or contestants.


  1. One who labors hard and lives meanly; a mean fellow.
    We should go there in as proper a manner possible; nor altogether like the scrubs about us.
  2. One who is a freak or unable to complete easy tasks.
    You are such a scrub! Instead of washing the dishes you put the used food on your face!
  3. A worn-out brush.
  4. A thicket or jungle, often specified by the name of the prevailing plant; as, oak scrub, palmetto scrub, etc.
  5. (Stock Breeding): One of the common livestock of a region of no particular breed or not of pure breed, esp. when inferior in size, etc. Often used to refer to male animals unsuited for breeding.
  6. Vegetation of inferior quality, though sometimes thick and impenetrable, growing in poor soil or in sand; also, brush. See brush, above.
  7. One who is no longer new to a game but still exhibits novice tendencies. "What a scrub."


one who labors hard and lives meanly; a mean fellow
something small and mean
a worn-out brush
a thicket or jungle
one of the common livestock of a region of no particular breed or not of pure breed
vegetation of inferior quality
one who is no longer new to a game but still exhibits novice tendencies

Derived terms

  • Scrub bird (Zool.), an Australian passerine bird of the family , as ; -- called also .
  • Scrub oak (Bot.), the popular name of several dwarfishspecies of oak. The scrub oak of New England and the Middle States is , a scraggy shrub; that of the Southern States is a small tree (); that of the Rocky Mountain region is , var. Gambelii.
  • Scrub robin (Zo["o]l.), an Australian singing bird of the genus .


  1. To rub hard; to wash with rubbing; usually, to rub with a wet brush, or with something coarse or rough, for the purpose of cleaning or brightening; as, to scrub a floor, a doorplate.
  2. To rub anything hard, especially with a wet brush; to scour;
  3. To be diligent and penurious; as, to scrub hard for a living.
  4. To call off a scheduled event; to cancel.
    Engineers had to scrub the satellite launch due to bad weather.


to rub hard
to rub anything hard
to be diligent and penurious
to call off a scheduled event; to cancel
  • Finnish: perua

Extensive Definition

Scrub(s) may refer to:

See also

  • Scrubber, an industrial gas-pollution control device
  • Data scrubbing, an error correction technique
  • "No Scrubs", a song by TLC from the Fanmail
  • Deku Scrubs or Deku, a race of creatures in The Legend of Zelda media
scrub in Thai: สครับ

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

a nobody, a nothing, abandon, ablate, ablation, ablution, abort, abrade, abrase, abrasion, abrasive, afforestation, arboretum, attrition, baptize, bark, bath, bathe, belay, boondocks, bramble, brier, brier bush, brush, brushwood, buff, buffing, burnishing, bush, bushveld, call off, cancel, cease, chafe, chafing, chase, cipher, cleaning out, cleanse, climax forest, cloud forest, common man, cut it out, dendrology, desist, detrition, discontinue, do away with, douche, douching, dressing, drop, drop it, dummy, elution, elutriation, end, enema, erase, erasure, erode, erosion, figurehead, file, filing, flush, flush out, flushing, flushing out, forest, forest land, forest preserve, forestry, fray, frazzle, fret, fretting, fringing forest, gall, gallery forest, galling, gargle, give over, give up, gnaw, gnaw away, grate, graze, grazing, greenwood, grind, grinding, halt, hanger, have done with, hold, holystone, index forest, insignificancy, irrigate, irrigation, jackstraw, jungle, jungles, knock it off, lather, lathering, launder, lavabo, lavage, lavation, lave, laving, lay off, leave off, lightweight, limation, little fellow, little guy, man of straw, mediocrity, mop, mop up, mopping, mopping up, national forest, nebbish, nobody one knows, nonentity, obscurity, palmetto barrens, park, park forest, pine barrens, pip-squeak, polish, polishing, poor relation, primeval forest, protection forest, punk, quit, rain forest, rasp, rasping, raze, reforestation, refrain, relinquish, renounce, rinse, rinse out, rinsing, ritually immerse, rub, rub away, rub off, rub out, rubbing away, runt, sandblasting, sanding, scour, scouring, scrape, scraping, scratch, scratching, scrub up, scrubbing, scrubbing up, scrubland, scrubwood, scuff, secondary, selection forest, shampoo, shining, shower, shrimp, shrub, shrubbery, shrubland, shrubwood, silviculture, skin, sluice, sluice out, small fry, small potato, small potatoes, smoothing, soap, soaping, sponge, sponging, sprout forest, squirt, squit, stand of timber, state forest, stay, stop, subaltern, subordinate, swab, swabbing, syringe, terminate, timber, timberland, toivel, tree veld, tub, underling, understrapper, virgin forest, wash, wash out, wash up, washing, washing up, washout, washup, wear, wear away, wearing away, whiffet, whippersnapper, wildwood, wiping up, wood, woodland, woods
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