Origin of English word SCRATCH

Bookmark and Share

English Word


Edenic Word


Hebrew Word









SCRATCH is "said to be from Middle English scratten, fused with cracchen (to scratch) - from Middle Dutch cratsen (to scratch)."the alleged Indo-European “root” is grat or krat (to scratch).

Guttural-liquid-dental is the sound of cutting.  חרט K[H]aRaDT is to engrave,     חרש   K[H]aRaSH is to plow or engrave; חרת   K[H]aRaT is to engrave or inscribe.    קרד    QaRaD is to scrape or curry and   קרדם QaRDoaM is a hatchet (Judges9:48).  Closest to the SCRATCHY end of the word SCRATCH is  חרץ K[H]aRaTS  (to cut into) and   חריץ K[H]aReeYTS,  an incision or slice (ISamuel17:18). A חריצא K[H]aReeYTSAh is the furrow or scratch made when dragging a chair across an earthen floor (a concern for Sabbath laws in the Talmud.)  In other Semitic, חרץ K[H]aRaTS  is to engrave in Phoenician; harasu is to dig in Akkadian. Engraving is positive, but most uses of this word connote mutilation and damage, like a SCRATCH in furniture.

A digger is one who is diligent, so this kind of digging in II Samuel 5:24 may connect to the  guttural-liquid-dental of GREED. 

For the unhistoric S in SC words, see SCOOP.


GRATE, a cognate of SCRATCH, is from גרד GeReD (to scratch, "to scrape"- Job2:8). This matches the Indo-European “root” grat (to scratch). If keeping the initial S of SCRATCH, consider SaRaDT or $aRaDT  (scratch – see   SERRATED) K[H]aRahTS also means to be diligent. (S)CRUTINY is linked to Indo-European “root” skreu (to cut, cutting tool). SCRUTINY'S cognates are SCREED, SCROTUM, SHRED and SHREW. Garuk is to scratch in Indonesian.

K[H]oQaiQ is to inscribe; Japanese chokoku is to carve, and kaku is to write.

See CHARACTER and GRADE.   For the bogus initial-S, see SCOOP.

Related Words


Leave a Comment

Comments are moderated and rel="nofollow" is in use. Offensive / irrelevant comments will be deleted.


 *Email (will not be published)

 *Enter captcha code

 Website (optional)