from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- adj. Insufficient to meet a demand or requirement; short in supply: Fresh vegetables were scarce during the drought.
- adj. Hard to find; absent or rare: Steel pennies are scarce now except in coin shops.
- adv. Barely or hardly; scarcely.
- idiom make (oneself) scarce Informal To stay away; be absent or elusive.
- idiom make (oneself) scarce Informal To depart, especially quickly or furtively; abscond.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- adj. Uncommon, rare; difficult to find; insufficient to meet a demand.
- adv. Scarcely, only just.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- adj. Not plentiful or abundant; in small quantity in proportion to the demand; not easily to be procured; rare; uncommon.
- adj. Scantily supplied (with); deficient (in); -- with of.
- adj. Sparing; frugal; parsimonious; stingy.
- adv. With difficulty; hardly; scantly; barely; but just.
- adv. Frugally; penuriously.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Sparing; parsimonious; niggard; niggardly; stingy.
- Scantily supplied; poorly provided; not having much: sometimes with of.
- Diminished; reduced from the original or the proper size or measure; deficient; short.
- Deficient in quantity or number; insufficient for the need or demand; scant; scanty; not abundant.
- Few in number; seldom seen; infrequent; uncommon; rare: as, scarce coins; a scarce book.
- Characterized by scarcity, especially of provisions, or the necessaries of life.
- Synonyms and Rare, Scarce. See rare.
- Hardly; barely; scarcely.
- To make less; diminish; make scant.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- adj. deficient in quantity or number compared with the demand
- adv. only a very short time before
Thus, _If cats are scarce, mice are plentiful_, contains two verbal clauses; but _if cats are scarce_ is conditional, not indicative; and _mice are plentiful_ is subject to the condition that _cats are scarce_.
A quarter century had passed since Douglas had hired the Court's first female clerk; that was during World War II, when male law students were in scarce supply.
Still, economists expect jobs likely will remain scarce even as the economy improves.
Unfortunately, deals are in scarce supply from wineries directly.
I think it will turn into another argument over how scarce is the ammo?
Environmental destruction will increase social problems as communities and individuals fight with one another to obtain scarce resources such as water.
Of course, this hoarding is one of the reasons certain scarce items disappear but better they disappear in my pantry than someone elses.
"The breadth and depth of the skills problem is illustrated by the fact that for two thirds of the firms surveyed, the skills they define as scarce comprise well over 50 percent of their current staff."
I call scarce express in words how much benefit may be had by cold baths; for they who use them, although almost spent with old age, have
He assured the prisoner with a glance of the eye, with a word scarce above a whisper, as he slowly rose to make his speech for the defence.