- The definition of scarce is a situation where there is too little of something or where something exists only in very small numbers.
- An example of scarce is money when you are poor.
- An example of scarce are dishes from a china pattern that was discontinued years ago.
Water is scarce in this desert.
scarce definition by Webster's New World
- not common; rarely seen
- not plentiful; not sufficient to meet the demand; hard to get
Origin: Middle English scars ; from Norman French escars (for Old French eschars) ; from Vulgar Latin an unverified form escarpsus, for Classical Latin excerptus, past participle of excerpere, to pick out, select (see excerpt); hence, that which is picked out and therefore scarce
- scarceness noun
scarce definition by American Heritage Dictionary
adjective scarc·er, scarc·est
- Insufficient to meet a demand or requirement; short in supply: Fresh vegetables were scarce during the drought.
- Hard to find; absent or rare: Steel pennies are scarce now except in coin shops.
Origin: Middle English scars, from Old French scars, from Vulgar Latin *excarpsus, narrow, cramped, from past participle of *excarpere, to pluck out, alteration of Latin excerpere, to pick out; see excerpt.
- scarceˈness noun
scarce - Phrases/Idioms
make oneself scarce
make (oneself) scarce
- To stay away; be absent or elusive.
- To depart, especially quickly or furtively; abscond.