Definition of scare noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//skeə(r)//
    ; NAmE NAmE//sker//
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  1. 1  [countable] (used especially in newspapers) a situation in which a lot of people are anxious or frightened about something a bomb/health scare recent scares about pesticides in food a scare story (= a news report that spreads more anxiety or fear about something than is necessary) to cause a major scare scare tactics (= ways of persuading people to do something by frightening them) See related entries: Fear
  2. 2  [singular] a sudden feeling of fear You gave me a scare! We've had quite a scare. see also scary
  3. Word OriginMiddle English: from Old Norse skirra ‘frighten’, from skjarr ‘timid’.Extra examples I got quite a scare when the police called me. It wasn’t a serious heart attack, but it gave him a terrible scare. The ad uses scare tactics to get people to stop smoking. The government used scare tactics to get parents to have their children vaccinated against the disease. a major health scare the scare over British beef the scare over bird flu Les had a health scare two years ago and was ordered to cut down on drinking. There was a bomb scare at the airport.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: scare