• IPA: /ˈskɹæmbl̩/

scramble (scrambles, present participle scrambling; past and past participle scrambled)

  1. (intransitive) To move hurriedly to a location, especially by using all limbs against a surface.
    • 1898, J. Meade Falkner, Moonfleet Chapter 3
      When I saw the coffin I knew that I was respited, for, as I judged, there was space between it and the wall behind enough to contain my little carcass; and in a second I had put out the candle, scrambled up the shelves, half-stunned my senses with dashing my head against the roof, and squeezed my body betwixt wall and coffin.
  2. (intransitive) To proceed to a location or an objective in a disorderly manner.
  3. (transitive, of food ingredients, usually, including egg) To thoroughly combine and cook as a loose mass.
    I scrambled some eggs with spinach and cheese.
  4. (transitive) To process (telecommunication signals) to make them unintelligible to an unauthorized listener.
  5. (transitive, military) To quickly deploy (vehicles, usually aircraft) to a destination in response to an alert, usually to intercept an attacking enemy.
  6. (intransitive, military) To be quickly deployed in this manner.
    • 1969, Burke Davis, Get Yamamoto (page 115)
      As the planes scrambled, four of his veterans went up: Tom Lanphier, Rex Barber, Joe Moore and Jim McLanahan. They had waited with other Lightnings at 30,000 feet and dived on a formation of eleven Zeroes far below, working in pairs.
  7. (intransitive, sports) To partake in motocross.
  8. (intransitive) To ascend rocky terrain as a leisure activity.
  9. (transitive) To gather or collect by scrambling.
    to scramble up wealth
  10. (transitive) To struggle eagerly with others for something thrown upon the ground; to go down upon all fours to seize something; to catch rudely at what is desired.
    • 1637, John Milton, “Lycidas”, in Poems of Mr. John Milton, […] , London: Printed by Ruth Raworth for Humphrey Moſely,  […], published 1645, OCLC 606951673 ↗, page 62 ↗:
      Of other care they little reck'ning make, / Then how to ſcramble at the ſhearers feaſt,
  11. (transitive) To throw something down for others to compete for in this manner.
    • 1952, Walkabout (volume 18, page 40)
      […] Father Boniface standing on the verandah of the Monastery on a Sunday afternoon “scrambling” lollies to the kids […]
Translations Translations Translations Translations Translations Noun

scramble (plural scrambles)

  1. A rush or hurry, especially making use of the limbs against a surface.
    a last-minute scramble to the finish line
  2. (military) An emergency defensive air force mission to intercept attacking enemy aircraft.
    • 1984, Steve Harris, "Aces High", Iron Maiden, Powerslave.
      quote en
  3. A motocross race.
  4. Any frantic period of competitive activity.
Antonyms Translations Translations Translations
  • French: motocross
  • Russian: мотого́нки
  • Russian: ажиота́ж
  1. (UK) Shouted when something desirable is thrown into a group of people who individually want that item, causing them to rush for it.

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