"one who or that which scratches," 1550s, agent noun from scratch (v.).
phylum of stinging invertebrates, 1860, with abstract noun ending -ia + Latinized form of Greek knidē "nettle," from stem of knizein "to scratch scrape," which is of uncertain origin. Beekes compares Lithuanian knìsti "to scratch, itch, tickle," knisù "to grub up;" Latvian knidet "to itch, geminate, creep;" Old Norse hnita "to push against;" Middle Irish cned "wound." Related: Cnidarian.
1710, "affected with 'the scratch,'" a skin disease (a sense now obsolete), from scratch (n.1) + -y (2). In reference to pen- or brush-work, "composed of scratches," by 1827, hence "ragged, rough, irregular." The sense of "grating" is by 1866. Of sounds (especially in recorded reproduction) by 1889. Related: Scratchiness.
light crust over a dish, 1806 (in au gratin), from French gratin "crust" (16c.), from gratter "to scrape, scratch" (see grate (v.)).
Old English writan "to score, outline, draw the figure of," later "to set down in writing" (class I strong verb; past tense wrat, past participle writen), from Proto-Germanic *writan "tear, scratch" (source also of Old Frisian writa "to write," Old Saxon writan "to tear, scratch, write," Old Norse rita "write, scratch, outline," Old High German rizan "to write, scratch, tear," German reißen "to tear, pull, tug, sketch, draw, design"), outside connections doubtful.
For men use to write an evill turne in marble stone, but a good turne in the dust. [More, 1513]
Words for "write" in most Indo-European languages originally mean "carve, scratch, cut" (such as Latin scribere, Greek graphein, glyphein, Sanskrit rikh-); a few originally meant "paint" (Gothic meljan, Old Church Slavonic pisati, and most of the modern Slavic cognates). To write (something) off (1680s) originally was from accounting; figurative sense is recorded from 1889. Write-in "unlisted candidate" is recorded from 1932.
1530s, "to scrawl; to scribble; make random, unmeaning marks," from Dutch schrabbelen, frequentative of schrabben "to scratch" (ultimately from PIE root *sker- (1) "to cut"). The intransitive meaning "scrape, scratch, or paw with the hands or claws" is from c. 1600; the meaning "to struggle, scramble" is recorded by 1630s, perhaps from or influenced by scramble. Related: Scrabbled; scrabbling.
*skrībh-, Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to cut, separate, sift;" an extended form of root *sker- (1) "to cut."
It forms all or part of: ascribe; ascription; circumscribe; conscript; conscription; describe; description; festschrift; inscribe; inscription; manuscript; postscript; prescribe; prescription; proscribe; sans-serif; scribble; scribe; script; scriptorium; scripture; scrivener; serif; shrift; shrive; subscribe; superscribe; superscript; transcribe; scarification; scarify.
It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Greek skariphasthai "to scratch an outline, sketch;" Latin scribere "to write" (to carve marks in wood, stone, clay, etc.); Lettish skripat "scratch, write;" Old Norse hrifa "scratch."
1851, "ancient wall inscriptions found in the ruins of Pompeii," from Italian graffiti, plural of graffito "a scribbling," a diminutive formation from graffio "a scratch or scribble," from graffiare "to scribble," ultimately from Greek graphein "to scratch, draw, write" (see -graphy). They are found in many ancient places, but the habit was especially popular among the Romans. Sense extended 1877 to recently made crude drawings and scribbling in public places.
early 15c., scocchen "to cut, score, gash, make an incision," a word of obscure origin. Century Dictionary considers that it might be a deformation of scratch. Chronology rules out connection with scorch. Perhaps [Barnhart] from Anglo-French escocher, Old French cocher "to notch, nick," from coche "a notch, groove," perhaps from Latin coccum "berry of the scarlet oak," which appears notched, from Greek kokkos.
The meaning "stamp out, crush" (often figurative, of abstract things) is by 1825, earlier "make harmless for a time, wound slightly" (1798), a sense that derives from an uncertain reading of "Macbeth" III.ii.13). Related: Scotched; scotching.