scarce

(redirected from scarcest)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal.
Related to scarcest: scariest

be as scarce as hen's teeth

To be incredibly rare; to be extremely difficult or impossible to find. Support for the president is as scarce as hens' teeth in this part of the country.
See also: scarce, teeth

(as) scarce as hens' teeth

Incredibly scarce or rare; extremely difficult or impossible to find. Support for the candidate is as scarce as hens' teeth in this part of the country.
See also: scarce, teeth

make (oneself) scarce

To leave, hide, or make oneself less visible, typically to avoid something. Lisa's fuming about your text message, so you better make yourself scarce until she calms down. Why is it that when there are chores to do, the kids somehow know to make themselves scarce?
See also: make, scarce

Good men are scarce.

 and A good man is hard to find.
Prov. Men who make good husbands or workers are rare. Larry is the best employee I've ever had, and I'll go to a good deal of effort to keep him, because good men are scarce. "I think you should marry John," Sue advised her daughter. "He's a good man, and a good man is hard to find."
See also: good, men, scarce

make oneself scarce

Fig. [for someone] to become difficult to find; [for someone to] go into hiding. Tom is mad and is looking for you. Better make yourself scarce. Make yourself scarce! Here comes the sheriff.
See also: make, scarce

*scarce as hen's teeth

 and scarcer than hen's teeth
Cliché scarce; seldom found. (*Also: as ~.) I do declare, decent people are as scarce as hen's teeth in these chaotic times. Handmade lace is scarcer than hen's teeth; most lace is made by machine.
See also: scarce, teeth

make oneself scarce

Depart quickly, go away, as in The children saw Mrs. Frost coming and made themselves scarce. This idiom applies scarce in the sense of "seldom seen" to removing one's presence. [c. 1800]
See also: make, scarce

scarce as hen's teeth

Also, scarcer than hen's teeth. Exceptionally rare, as in On a rainy night, taxis are as scarce as hen's teeth. Since hens have no teeth, this term in effect says that something is so scarce as to be nonexistent. [Mid-1800s]
See also: scarce, teeth

rare as hen's teeth

or

scarce as hen's teeth

OLD-FASHIONED
If something is as rare as hen's teeth or as scarce as hen's teeth, it is extremely rare. Record companies are becoming as rare as hen's teeth. Note: Hens do not have teeth.
See also: rare, teeth

rare (or scarce) as hen's teeth

extremely rare.
As hens do not possess teeth, the implication is that something is rare to the point of non-existence. The phrase was originally a US colloquialism, dating from the mid 19th century.
See also: rare, teeth

make yourself scarce

surreptitiously disappear; keep out of the way. informal
See also: make, scarce

(as) rare/scarce as hen’s ˈteeth

(old-fashioned) extremely rare: Critics always complain that good movies that the whole family can see together are as scarce as hen’s teeth.
This refers to the fact that hens do not have teeth.
See also: rare, scarce, teeth

ˌmake yourself ˈscarce

(informal) leave the place you are in in order to avoid an embarrassing or difficult situation: I could see they wanted to be alone, so I made myself scarce.
See also: make, scarce

make oneself scarce

tv. to leave; to be in a place less frequently; to be less in evidence. Here come the boys in blue. I’d better make myself scarce.
See also: make, scarce

make (oneself) scarce

Informal
1. To stay away; be absent or elusive.
2. To depart, especially quickly or furtively; abscond.
See also: make, scarce

scarce as hen's teeth

Nonexistent. Hens have no teeth, so what could possibly be scarcer? (Stones in their gizzards act as teeth to grind their food).
See also: scarce, teeth
References in periodicals archive ?
That manager, and everyone in our audience, lives and works in a world where the scarcest resources are time and attention.
In a situation of constant information flow, human attention is the scarcest resource.
Many domestic flights out of Tokyo's Haneda airport were fully booked, with seats scarcest on flights to Sapporo and Fukuoka.
There are only eight possible three-digit codes, making them among the scarcest of telephone numbering resources.
warns "our scarcest resource is globally literate leaders.
But given the wrenching changes necessary to meet all the challenges facing the industry, the skill in scarcest supply is one that always has been extremely rare: leadership.
The Hambrecht plan calls for 200 hectares of land, crowded Hong Kong's scarcest commodity, which is four times as much as the territory's other IT mega-project, the $1.
Leadership is one of our most valuable resources, yet we continually hear the lament that leadership is our scarcest commodity.
therefore it always commits the institution's scarcest and most valuable resources--and above all its ablest people--to nonresults.
Community, is our scarcest commodity in the 1990s, warns Mary Pipher, clinical psychologist, family therapist, and author of Reviving Ophelia, the New York Times bestseller that probes the psychological toll of growing up in today's society with a focus on the complex world of teenage girls.
It is a testimony to the Real Madrid forward and Goran Vlaovic that they managed to keep Romania's defence occupied throughout on the scarcest of service.
Every morning, CSUN students grapple for the best but scarcest parking spots - the ones near classrooms.
In the research library of the late twentieth century, the scarcest resource may well turn out to be human expertise, particularly in subject disciplines and technology.
The scarcest commodity that exists is physician leaders.
One of the scarcest resources in our industry are highly trained, effective middle- and upper-management personnel with beverage industry experience.