scare up


verb (used with object), scared, scaring.
to fill, especially suddenly, with fear or terror; frighten; alarm.
verb (used without object), scared, scaring.
to become frightened: That horse scares easily.
a sudden fright or alarm, especially with little or no reason.
a time or condition of alarm or worry: For three months there was a war scare.
Verb phrases
scare up, Informal. to obtain with effort; find or gather: to scare up money.

1150–1200; (v.) Middle English skerren < Old Norse skirra to frighten, derivative of skjarr timid, shy; (noun) late Middle English skere, derivative of the v.

scarer, noun
scaringly, adverb
unscared, adjective

1. startle, intimidate. See frighten. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
scare (skɛə)
1.  to fill or be filled with fear or alarm
2.  (tr; often foll by away or off) to drive (away) by frightening
3.  informal (US), (Canadian) (tr), (foll by up)
 a.  to produce (a meal) quickly from whatever is available
 b.  to manage to find (something) quickly or with difficulty: brewers need to scare up more sales
4.  a sudden attack of fear or alarm
5.  a period of general fear or alarm
6.  causing (needless) fear or alarm: a scare story
[C12: from Old Norse skirra; related to Norwegian skjerra, Swedish dialect skjarra]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

c.1200, from O.N. skirra "to frighten," related to skjarr "timid, shy," of unknown origin. The noun is attested from 1520s. To scare up "procure, obtain" is first recorded 1846, Amer.Eng., from notion of rousing game from cover.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

scare up

Also, scrape together or up. Assemble or produce with considerable effort, as in We managed to scare up extra chairs for the unexpectedly large audience, or He managed to scrape together enough cash to buy two more tickets. The first term alludes to scare in the sense of "flush game out of cover" and dates from the mid-1800s; the variant, alluding to scratching or clawing for something, was first recorded in 1549. Also see scrape up an acquaintance.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Idioms & Phrases
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