scratch off

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scratch off

1. To scrape something off (of something else), especially in a hurried, inelegant, or careless manner. A noun or pronoun can be used between "scratch" and "off." Someone scratched off the serial number, so there's no way to trace where the machine was sold. He scratched paint off the car when he brushed up against the trees as he reversed out of the driveway.
2. To scrape away the opaque covering on a competition ticket, especially a lottery ticket, that reveals whether one won or not. A noun or pronoun can be used between "scratch" and "off." He howled with joy when he scratched off the ticket and saw three winning symbols—only to realize that it was a promotion for a car dealership, not a lottery ticket. Even though I know better, I still get a little rush of excitement when I scratch a lottery ticket off.
3. To eliminate or strike through someone's or something's name on a list. A noun or pronoun can be used between "scratch" and "off." Well, that's another thing we can scratch off our to-do list for our trip through Europe. I had to scratch him off the list of players for Saturday's game when I found out he was failing in three subjects. I had to scratch Jenny off the roster because she was late for the third time in a row.
4. To hastily write or draw something by hand. He quickly scratched off a phone number on a slip of paper and pushed it across the desk to me. I scratched off a crude sketch of the attacker while his face was fresh in my mind.
See also: off, scratch

scratch off

v.
1. To remove something or an outer layer of something by lightly scraping: I scratched off the paint that had dripped on the table. The mud on my shoes dried up, so I scratched it off. I scratched off the lottery ticket with a coin.
2. To remove someone or something from a list or record: I decided not to sign up for the team, so the coach scratched off my name from the list. We don't need any pickles, so you can scratch that off the shopping list.
3. To write or draw something hurriedly: After the party I scratched off a thank-you note. It's a very old essay—I scratched it off when I was in middle school.
See also: off, scratch