"You canker blossom!" 3 Shakespearean Insults


[skohld] /skoʊld/
verb (used with object)
to find fault with angrily; chide; reprimand:
The teacher scolded me for being late.
verb (used without object)
to find fault; reprove.
to use abusive language.
a person who is constantly scolding, often with loud and abusive speech.
Origin of scold
1150-1200; (noun) Middle English, variant of scald < Old Norse skald poet (as author of insulting poems); see skald; (v.) Middle English scolden, derivative of the noun
Related forms
scoldable, adjective
scolder, noun
scoldingly, adverb
outscold, verb (used with object)
unscolded, adjective
1. reprove; censure. See reproach.
1. praise. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for scolded
  • Health journalists are getting scolded by one of their own.
  • There is plenty of positive reinforcement, but it doesn't seem to change anything, and he is scolded for doing the naughty things.
  • When you had scolded enough he wept and all was forgiven.
  • The doctor had scolded her and had declared she was in danger of losing her hearing.
  • Sometimes she was angry about some happening at the banker's house and scolded away for hours.
  • By contrast, more such behaviours were seen in trials when owners scolded their dogs.
  • Because we've been convinced and told and reminded and scolded that taking a pill means something is wrong with you.
  • It was a source of hilarity for him and the other altar boys, and when the priests scolded them, it only added to the fun.
  • Bush deserves to be scolded for his arrogance, his divisiveness, and his incompetence.
  • He scolded himself for getting his hopes up, for expecting this visit to actually occur.
British Dictionary definitions for scolded


to find fault with or reprimand (a person) harshly; chide
(intransitive) to use harsh or abusive language
a person, esp a woman, who constantly finds fault
Derived Forms
scoldable, adjective
scolder, noun
scolding, noun
scoldingly, adverb
Word Origin
C13: from Old Norse skald
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for scolded



mid-12c., "person of ribald speech," later "person fond of abusive language" (c.1300), especially a shrewish woman [Johnson defines it as "A clamourous, rude, mean, low, foul-mouthed woman"], from Old Norse skald "poet" (see skald). The sense evolution might reflect the fact that Germanic poets (like their Celtic counterparts) were famously feared for their ability to lampoon and mock (e.g. skaldskapr "poetry," also, in Icelandic law books, "libel in verse").


late 14c., "be abusive or quarrelsome," from scold (n.). Related: Scolded; scolding.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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