There are 2 main definitions of scour in English:

scour1

Line breaks: scour
Pronunciation: /ˈskaʊə
 
/

verb

1 [with object] Clean or brighten the surface of (something) by rubbing it hard, typically with an abrasive or detergent: she scoured the cooker I was scouring out the pans
More example sentences
  • Utensils, pots, counters are scoured clean as soon as they are used.
  • The chain mail had begun to rust, despite her attempts to scour it clean, and the cotton undershirt was stained and getting a bit rank.
  • Mild abrasives are used to scour pots and pans, oven interiors, and drip pans.
Synonyms
scrub, rub, clean, wash, cleanse, wipe;
polish, buff (up), shine, burnish;
Scottish & Northern English dight
archaic furbish
1.1Remove (dirt or unwanted matter) by scouring: use an electric toothbrush to scour off plaque
More example sentences
  • Do not scour off the seasoned finish built up on cast iron over long use.
1.2(Of water or a watercourse) make (a channel or pool) by flowing quickly over something and removing soil or rock: a stream came crashing through a narrow cavern to scour out a round pool below
More example sentences
  • The water flow has scoured deep pools underneath the trees, creating excellent cover habitat for fish.
  • These underwater rock piles run perpendicular from shore toward the channel to divert water to help scour the channel.
  • The channels were probably scoured by storms and filled with shells removed from inner platform settings.
2 [no object] (Of livestock) suffer from diarrhoea: he went out to deal with piglets who were scouring
More example sentences
  • Accustomed to ensilage, a full ration of alfalfa would start the cows scouring and by tomorrow morning the pasture would stink.
2.1 [with object] archaic Administer a strong purgative to: he immediately proceeded to scour him with the most potent medicines

noun

[mass noun] Back to top  
1The action of scouring or the state of being scoured, especially by swift-flowing water: the scour of the tide may cause lateral erosion
More example sentences
  • Some remedial work to prevent scour and undermining of the foundations was carried out during the last century to the new bridge but it is now showing signs of wear.
  • We now understand that this testifies to the recurring disturbance that these habitats receive from fluctuating water levels, fire, ice scour and storms.
  • The Sound is protected from ice scour by a string of offshore islands.
1.1 [in singular] An act of rubbing something hard to clean or brighten it: give the floor a good scour
2 (also scours) Diarrhoea in livestock, especially cattle and pigs.
More example sentences
  • If you have problems with scour ask your vet about the steps you can take to prevent it in your herd.
  • Good farmyard management and cleanliness can control scour, and early and rapid treatment are essential once an outbreak occurs.
  • Where there has previously been an outbreak of scour on a farm, cows may be vaccinated to help boost immunity of the calf.

Origin

Middle English: from Middle Dutch, Middle Low German schūren, from Old French escurer, from late Latin excurare 'clean (off)', from ex- 'away' + curare 'to clean'.

Derivatives

scourer

noun
More example sentences
  • They hadn't a clue about the right products and materials for the job - one lummox had even ruined a stainless steel cooker by attacking it with a steel scourer.
  • Bicarb is a great gentle scourer and natural odour absorber.
  • In the case of plastral staining by tannin and other deposits, the plastron was scrubbed with a stainless steel scourer to allow visibility of the plastral figure.

Definition of scour in:

There are 2 main definitions of scour in English:

scour2

Line breaks: scour
Pronunciation: /ˈskaʊə
 
/

verb

[with object]
1Subject (a place, text, etc.) to a thorough search in order to locate something: David scoured each newspaper for an article on the murder
More example sentences
  • A rescue helicopter was scrambled to help search teams to scour the area, which is one of the sparsely populated places in Britain.
  • The newly minted label heralds itself as a label that scours the globe in search of the best electronic music producers and artists.
  • A plane has joined the search as police scour the thinly-wooded land for the gunman and for any sign of the missing tourist.
Synonyms
search, comb, hunt through, rummage through, sift through, go through with a fine-tooth comb, root through, rake through, leave no stone unturned, mine, look all over, look high and low in;
ransack, turn upside-down, turn over;
drag
Australian/New Zealand informal fossick through
1.1 [no object, with adverbial of direction] Move rapidly in a particular direction, especially in search or pursuit of someone or something: he scoured up the ladder
More example sentences
  • Surely a tower of bone that looks as though it could touch the sun itself, would be noticeable to one of the many search parties that had scoured through this land.

Origin

late Middle English: related to obsolete scour 'moving hastily', of unknown origin.

Definition of scour in: