A pond covered with scum.
- Scum is defined as a layer of matter or debris on the surface of water or other liquids, or is slang for worthless or undesirable people.
- A layer of dirt, algae and gunk that forms on top of your backyard pond if it is not clean is an example of scum.
- Those who steal, cheat and lie are an example of scum.
- Scum is to become covered with a thin layer of matter or debris.
When a lake becomes covered on the top with a thin layer of dirt and debris, this is an example of when the lake scums over.
- a thin layer of impurities which forms on the top of liquids or bodies of water, often as the result of boiling or fermentation
- the dross or refuse on top of molten metals
- worthless parts or things; refuse
- Informal a low, despicable person, or such people collectively; lowlife
Origin of scumMiddle English from Middle Dutch schum, akin to German schaum, foam, scum, probably from Indo-European base an unverified form (s)keu-, to cover from source sky
intransitive verbscummed, scum′ming
- A filmy or frothy layer of matter that forms on the surface of a liquid or body of water or on a hard surface.
- The refuse or dross of molten metals.
- Refuse or worthless matter.
- Slang One, such as a person or an element of society, that is regarded as despicable or worthless.
verbscummed, scum·ming, scums
Origin of scumMiddle English from Middle Dutch schūm ; see (s)keu- in Indo-European roots.
(countable and uncountable, plural scums)
- (uncountable) A layer of impurities that accumulates at the surface of a liquid (especially molten metal or water).
- (uncountable) A greenish water vegetation (such as algae), usually found floating on the surface of ponds
- The topmost liquid layer of a cesspool or septic tank.
- (uncountable, slang, chiefly US) semen
- (countable, derogatory, slang) A reprehensible person or persons.
(third-person singular simple present scums, present participle scumming, simple past and past participle scummed)
- To remove the layer of scum from (a liquid etc.).
- To remove (something) as scum.
- To become covered with scum.
- Wandering up and down without certain seat, they lived by scumming those seas and shores as pirates.
From Middle English scum, scom, from Old English *scÅ«m (“foam") or Middle Dutch schÅ«me (“foam"), both from Proto-Germanic *skÅ«maz (“froth, foam"), from Proto-Indo-European *skeu- (“to cover, conceal"). Cognate with Dutch schuim (“foam"), German Schaum (“foam"), Danish and Swedish skum (“foam"). Compare also French Ã©cume (“scum"), Italian schiuma (“foam") Walloon schome (“scum, foam") from the same Germanic source. Related to skim.