I. verb Etymology: Middle English scateren, schateren to disperse, break up, destroy; akin to Middle Dutch schaderen to scatter Date: 14th century transitive verb 1. a. to cause to separate widely b. to cause to vanish 2. archaic to fling away heedlessly ; squander 3. to distribute irregularly 4. to sow by casting in all directions ; strew 5. a. to reflect irregularly and diffusely b. to cause (a beam of radiation) to diffuse or disperse 6. to divide into ineffectual small portions intransitive verb 1. to separate and go in various directions ; disperse 2. to occur or fall irregularly or at random • scatterer noun Synonyms: scatter, disperse, dissipate, dispel mean to cause to separate or break up. scatter implies a force that drives parts or units irregularly in many directions <
the bowling ball scattered the pins
. disperse implies a wider separation and a complete breaking up of a mass or group <
police dispersed the crowd
. dissipate stresses complete disintegration or dissolution and final disappearance <
the fog was dissipated by the morning sun
. dispel stresses a driving away or getting rid of as if by scattering <
an authoritative statement that dispelled all doubt
. II. noun Date: 1642 1. the act of scattering 2. a small quantity or number irregularly distributed or strewn about ; scattering 3. the state or extent of being scattered; especially dispersion

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • scatter — 1 Scatter, disperse, dissipate, dispel can mean to cause a group, mass, or assemblage to separate or break up. Scatter may imply the use or operation of force which drives the persons or things in different directions {the hurricane scattered the …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • Scatter — Scat ter, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Scattered}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Scattering}.] [OE. scateren. See {Shatter}.] 1. To strew about; to sprinkle around; to throw down loosely; to deposit or place here and there, esp. in an open or sparse order. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • scatter — ● scatter nom masculin (anglais to scatter, disperser) Dispersion relative des résultats partiels obtenus par un sujet à une batterie de tests. scatter [skatɛʀ] n. m. ÉTYM. 1968; mot angl., de to scatter « éparpiller, disperser ». ❖ ♦ Anglic.… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • scatter — scat‧ter [ˈskætə ǁ ər] noun [uncountable] MARKETING used to talk about advertising that is spread over a wide range of television or radio programmes according to what is available, rather than done by selecting particular programmes to sponsor:… …   Financial and business terms

  • scatter — [skat′ər] vt. [ME skateren, ult. < IE * sked , to split, disperse < base * sek , to cut > L secare] 1. a) to throw here and there or strew loosely; sprinkle b) to sprinkle over (with) something 2. to separate and drive in many… …   English World dictionary

  • Scatter — Scat ter, v. i. To be dispersed or dissipated; to disperse or separate; as, clouds scatter after a storm. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • scatter — index break (fracture), deploy, diffuse, disband, disburse (distribute), dislocate, disorganize …   Law dictionary

  • scatter — (v.) mid 12c., possibly a northern English variant of M.E. schateren (see SHATTER (Cf. shatter)), reflecting Norse influence. Related: Scattered; scattering. Scattershot (adj.) is attested from 1961; figurative use of term for a kind of gun… …   Etymology dictionary

  • scatter — [v] strew, disperse besprinkle, broadcast, cast, derange, diffuse, disband, discard, disject, dispel, disseminate, dissipate, distribute, disunite, diverge, divide, expend, fling, intersperse, litter, migrate, part, pour, put to flight*, run away …   New thesaurus

  • scatter — ► VERB 1) throw in various random directions. 2) separate and move off in different directions. 3) (be scattered) occur or be found at various places rather than all together. 4) Physics deflect or diffuse (electromagnetic radiation or particles) …   English terms dictionary

  • Scatter — In ordinary English, to scatter is to distribute randomly. Scatter also has the following meanings: *In physics, scattering is the study of collisions, especially of waves and particles (synonymous in quantum mechanics). In elastic scattering the …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”