from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • intransitive v. To run or skim along swiftly and easily: dark clouds scudding by.
  • intransitive v. Nautical To run before a gale with little or no sail set.
  • n. The act of scudding.
  • n. Wind-driven clouds, mist, or rain.
  • n. A gust of wind.
  • n. Ragged low clouds, moving rapidly beneath another cloud layer.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Naked.
  • v. To race along swiftly (especially used of clouds).
  • v. To run before a high wind with no sails set.
  • v. To hit.
  • v. To speed.
  • v. To skim.
  • n. The act of scudding.
  • n. Clouds or rain driven by the wind.
  • n. A gust of wind.
  • n. A scab on a wound.
  • n. Pornography.
  • n. Irn-Bru.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To move swiftly; especially, to move as if driven forward by something.
  • intransitive v. To be driven swiftly, or to run, before a gale, with little or no sail spread.
  • transitive v. To pass over quickly.
  • n. The act of scudding; a driving along; a rushing with precipitation.
  • n. Loose, vapory clouds driven swiftly by the wind.
  • n. A slight, sudden shower.
  • n. A small flight of larks, or other birds, less than a flock.
  • n. Any swimming amphipod crustacean.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To run swiftly; shoot or fly along with haste.
  • Nautical, to run before a gale with little or no sail set.
  • To throw thin flat stones so that they skip over the surface of water.
  • In tanning, to remove remaining hairs, dirt, etc., from (skins or hides) with a hand-knife after depilation.
  • To pass over quickly.
  • To beat or chastise, especially on the bare buttocks; skelp; spank.
  • n. The act of scudding; a driving along; a running or rushing with speed or precipitation.
  • n. Small detached clouds driven rapidly along under a mass of storm-cloud: a common accompaniment of rain.
  • n. A slight flying shower.
  • n. A small number of larks, less than a flock.
  • n. A swift runner; a scudder.
  • n. A smart stroke with the open hand; a skelp; a slap: as, to give one a scud on the face.
  • n. A beach-flea or sand-flea: some small crustacean, as an isopod or amphipod.
  • n. One of the largest scuds is Gammarus ornatus of the New England coast.
  • n. Dirt, lime, and fat left in the grain of a skin after it comes from the puer.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. run before a gale
  • v. run or move very quickly or hastily
  • n. the act of moving along swiftly (as before a gale)


Possibly from Middle English scut, rabbit, rabbit's tail; see scut1.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Perhaps from Old Norse skjóta ("to throw, to shoot"). (Wiktionary)



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  • "Scudding drifts" used as a kenning for "waves"

    - Alfred Tennyson, Ulysses

    June 5, 2013

  • ...the driving scud, rack, and mist, grew darker with the shadows of night...

    - Melville, Moby-Dick, ch. 48

    July 25, 2008

  • Scots - naked, nude.

    "Ooooh, yir nae allowed tae be in the scud here."
    - Oh, you are not allowed to be in the nude here.

    December 8, 2007