scurvy

scurvy 1560s, noun use of adj. scurvy (early 15c.), variant of scurfy (see SCURF (Cf. scurf)). It took on the meaning of Du. scheurbuik, Fr. scorbut "scurvy," the disease characterized by swollen and bleeding gums, prostration, etc., perhaps from O.N. skyrbjugr, perhaps lit. "a swelling (bjugr) from drinking sour milk (skyr) on long sea voyages;" but OED has alternative etymology of M.Du. or M.L.G. origin, as "disease that lacerates the belly," from schoren "to lacerate" + M.L.G. buk, Du. buik "belly."

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

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  • Scurvy — Scur vy, a. [Compar. {Scurvier}; superl. {Scurviest}.] [From {Scurf}; cf. {Scurvy}, n.] 1. Covered or affected with scurf or scabs; scabby; scurfy; specifically, diseased with the scurvy. Whatsoever man . . . be scurvy or scabbed. Lev. xxi. 18,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Scurvy — Scur vy, n. [Probably from the same source as scorbute, but influenced by scurf, scurfy, scurvy, adj.; cf. D. scheurbuik scurvy, G. scharbock, LL. scorbutus. Cf. {Scorbute}.] (Med.) A disease characterized by livid spots, especially about the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • scurvy — [skʉr′vē] adj. scurvier, scurviest [< SCURF] 1. former var. of SCURFY 2. low; mean; vile; contemptible n. [< SCURVY the adj.] a disease resulting from a deficiency of ascorbic acid in the body, characterized by weakness, anemia, spo …   English World dictionary

  • scurvy — index iniquitous, objectionable, odious, poor (inferior in quality) Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • scurvy — adj *contemptible, despicable, pitiable, sorry, cheap, beggarly, shabby Analogous words: *base, low, vile: *mean, abject …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • scurvy — ► NOUN ▪ a disease caused by a deficiency of vitamin C, characterized by bleeding gums and the opening of previously healed wounds. ► ADJECTIVE (scurvier, scurviest) archaic ▪ worthless or contemptible. ORIGIN from SCURF(Cf. ↑scurfy) …   English terms dictionary

  • Scurvy — Classification and external resources Scorbutic gums, a symptom …   Wikipedia

  • scurvy — scurvily, adv. scurviness, n. /skerr vee/, n., adj., scurvier, scurviest. n. 1. Pathol. a disease marked by swollen and bleeding gums, livid spots on the skin, prostration, etc., due to a diet lacking in vitamin C. adj. 2. contemptible;… …   Universalium

  • Scurvy — A disorder caused by lack of vitamin C. Symptoms include anemia; soft, bleeding gums; and bumps under the skin near muscles. Scurvy in early childhood can cause musculoskeletal problems. Treatment is by including foods high in vitamin C in the… …   Medical dictionary

  • scurvy — n. a disease that is caused by a deficiency of vitamin C (ascorbic acid). Unlike most animals, humans cannot synthesize ascorbic acid and must obtain it from fresh fruit and vegetables. The first sign of scurvy is swollen bleeding gums, and a… …   The new mediacal dictionary

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