scratch away at (something)

(redirected from scratches away at)

scratch away at (something)

To scrape some surface steadily or continuously with something hard, sharp, or abrasive. I've been scratching away at this spark plug for nearly an hour, but I just can't seem to get rid of all the rust. The dog scratched away at the door, whining to be let out into the back yard.
See also: away, scratch
References in periodicals archive ?
It defies logic and scratches away at your deep-seated love for the club when the players can give champions Bristol City a run for their money in their own backyard one week and whither and wilt against a relegation rival the next when the form book suggested City should have put them to the sword.
Whether out of some kind of overpowering empathy, or because she comes to share his reality, Agnes scratches away at bugs that may or may not be there.
It is a probative sort of a book, which scratches away at case law in search of the underlying themes and directions of administrative law.
This second instalment scratches away at the gilded Edwardian era to uncover Britain on the brink of a revolution and headed for war.
the while, necessity, who is the mother of invention, scratches away at
There are moments, though, when the idea of Bruce's cave scratches away at the senses as I'm passing, but usually I just say "ach, some other Ecclefechan time," or something like that, and clatter on down the road.