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To cancel or abort some plan or activity. We had to scrub the new office in New York after the stock market took a dive. We may have to scrub the picnic this weekend if the weather is as bad as they're predicting it will be.
See also: scrub
To wash oneself, especially one's hands, very thoroughly with soap and water. Make sure to get your kids in the habit of scrubbing up before they eat. All surgeons must scrub up before entering the operating room.
1. To wash the inside of something very thoroughly and vigorously. A noun or pronoun can be used between "scrub" and "out." Did you scrub out the pots and pans like I asked? I've got to take this apart and scrub it out from the inside.
2. To clean some substance or residue out of the inside of something very thoroughly and vigorously. A noun or pronoun is used between "scrub" and "out"; often followed by "of (something)." You can't just leave the pot to soak overnight—you've got to scrub all the burnt food out with a scouring pad. I've got to scrub the gunk out of my keyboard, or it could end up permanently broken.
To clean away some substance or residue (from something) very thoroughly and vigorously. A noun or pronoun is used between "scrub" and "away." You'll want to scrub away all the caked-on dirt and grime before you attempt to repair your bicycle. The salt-and-sugar rub helps you scrub dirt and dead skin cells away, giving your skin a bright, healthy glow.
To clean away some substance or residue (from something) very thoroughly and vigorously. A noun or pronoun is used between "scrub" and "off." You should be scrubbing off all the caked-on dirt and grime from your bicycle at least once a week, or it will wear out a lot faster than it would otherwise. The salt-and-sugar rub helps you scrub dirt and dead skin cells off your body, giving your skin a bright, healthy glow.
To wash someone or something very thoroughly and vigorously. A noun or pronoun can be used between "scrub" and "down." Make sure you scrub the kids down before they go to bed—they've been out playing in the mud all day. We'll need to scrub down the car before my parents get home, or they'll know we took it without asking.
scrub someone or something down
to clean someone or something thoroughly by rubbing. The mother scrubbed the baby down gently and put lotion on her. Please scrub down this floor.
scrub someone or something off
to clean someone or something by rubbing. Mother scrubbed Timmy off. Liz scrubbed off the countertop.
scrub something away
to clean something away by rubbing. See if you can scrub that rust away. Scrub away that rust if you can.
scrub something off (of) somethingand scrub something off
to clean something off something by scrubbing. (Of is usually retained before pronouns.) I have to scrub the mud off the porch steps. Did you scrub off all the grease?
scrub something out
to clean out the inside of something by rubbing or brushing. Please scrub these pots out and put them away. Jim will scrub out the pots.
1. Lit. to clean oneself up. You have to scrub up before dinner. Please go scrub up before you come to the table.
2. Fig. to clean oneself, especially one's hands and arms, as a preparation for performing a surgical procedure. The surgeon scrubbed up thoroughly before the operation. When you finish scrubbing up, someone will help you on with sterile clothing.
Thoroughly wash one's hands and forearms, as before performing surgery. For example, The residents had to scrub up in case they were called on to assist with the operation. [c. 1900]
To wash the hands and arms thoroughly, as before performing or participating in surgery: The doctors and nurses scrubbed up before entering the operating room.