Definition of scalp in English:

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Pronunciation: /skalp/


1The skin covering the head, excluding the face: hair tonics will improve the condition of your hair and scalp
More example sentences
  • Sometimes, this fungus can cause our scalps to shed skin cells too quickly.
  • Medically speaking, it is a condition where the skin cells on the scalp go into over drive and are produced in excess, which gives rise to irritation and itching.
  • Dandruff is characterised by small, loose flakes of dead skin on the scalp or trapped in the hair.
1.1 historical The scalp with the hair belonging to it, cut or torn away from an enemy’s head as a battle trophy, a former practice among American Indians.
Example sentences
  • Young Pawnee warriors proudly stole horses and scalps from their enemies, the Sioux.
  • The differences between what happened at Fort William Henry and at Niagara need not be seen as evolutionary; the aftermath of battle had yielded many scalps and prisoners for the Iroquois at Niagara.
  • After the Indians killed soldiers, they would take their scalps as trophies.
1.2Used with reference to the defeat of an opponent: in rugby Gloucester claimed the scalp of would-be champions Bath
More example sentences
  • In Thailand the internet has nurtured an unprecedented civic consciousness and a new anti-corruption watchdog has claimed the scalp of the interior minister.
  • They have also already claimed the scalp of Lazio.
  • But for the on-loan Welshman, United would already have claimed the scalp of Martin O'Neill's men this term.
2Scottish A bare rock projecting above surrounding water or vegetation.


[with object]
1 historical Take the scalp of (an enemy): none of the soldiers were scalped
More example sentences
  • This squares with the team song, which goes on about scalping the enemy and other warrior skills, befitting for a game of violence, which football clearly is (I speak as a fan).
  • Historians Hippocrates and Herodotus thought that the Amazons had to fight until they had scalped three enemies before they were permitted to mate.
  • Where almost all the bodies of the Cavalry soldiers had been scalped the bodies of Keogh and Custer were not harmed apart from their battle wounds.
1.1 informal Punish severely: if I ever heard anybody doing that I’d scalp them
More example sentences
  • I would like feedback on this new project I'm working on though, without posting it preferably, because I have a feeling I'd be scalped for starting something new when I'm working on this.
  • He carefully moved aside papers; he knew if he messed up his mother's work she'd scalp him.
2North American informal Resell (shares or tickets) at a large or quick profit: tickets were scalped for forty times their face value
More example sentences
  • Last spring, fans scalped tickets at Boston-New York spring training games!
  • Bobby began his working life scalping tickets to Boston Celtics games and ended up buying the hallowed parquet floor of the Boston Garden before it was torn down.
  • Tickets were being scalped for $200, and commemorative pins were sold to mark the occasion.





Middle English (denoting the skull or cranium): probably of Scandinavian origin.

Words that rhyme with scalp


For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: scalp

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