score

Definitions

General English

Construction

  • In concrete work, to modify the top surface of one pour, as by roughening, so as to improve the mechanical bond with the succeeding pour.
  • To tool grooves in a freshly placed concrete surface to reduce cracking from shrinkage.
  • To scratch or otherwise roughen a surface to enhance the bond of plaster, mortar, or stucco that will be applied to it.
  • To groove, notch, or mark a surface for practical or decorative purposes.

Cricket

  • noun the number of runs made by an individual or team in an innings or at a particular point in the innings
    Citation ‘In looking over carefully the list of matches for twenty years, we shall find no scores on the average at all approaching those of the elder Walker and Beldham’ (Mitford 1833 in HM)
    Citation ‘The most romantic of all cricket records, the highest individual Test score, fell to Brian Lara at the Antigua Recreation ground yesterday at 11.45 am’ (Christopher Martin-Jenkins, Daily Telegraph 19 April 1994)
    Citation ‘An outside edge, or late cut, or guided defensive shot, or whatever Ntini might claim he played, ran down to third man and the scores were level’ (Edward Craig, Cricinfo Magazine April 2006)
  • noun the record of all the runs made in a match
    Citation ‘The score was kept by notching each individual run on a stick’ (Encyclopaedia Britannica 1877, vol VI)
  • noun a mark or ‘notch’ made on a tally as a primitive way of recording the making of a run
    Citation ‘It is called a run, and one notch or score is made upon the tally towards the game’ (J. Strutt, The Sports and Pastimes of the People of England 1801)
  • verb to gain a run or runs
    Citation ‘Diver followed, but it was some time before he could score’ (Lillywhite 1860)
    Citation ‘Of his 10,000-plus runs, Allan Border has scored almost 4,500 runs in boundaries’ (B.B. Mama, Sportstar [Chennai] 4 June 1994)
    Citation ‘The record is held by India’s Chandrasekhar, who four times was out without scoring in both innings of a Test’ (WCM October 1984)
    Citation ‘It was an innings that did more than score runs: it brought the beginnings of despair to the opposition’ (Simon Barnes, Wisden 2006)
  • verb (of an individual or team) to make the stated score
    Citation ‘England could only manage 8—84 in their allotted overs against Australia … and Australia won easily, scoring 210 with the evergreen Sharon Tredrea top scoring with 69’ (Cashman & Weaver 1991)
    Citation ‘Botham started fairly quietly, scoring 39 in 87 minutes before tea’ (Brearley 1982)
  • verb to add a run or runs to the total made by an individual or team; record as part of the score
    Citation ‘The one run penalty for a No ball shall be scored as a No ball extra’ (Law 24 § 13)
  • verb to record the score in a match; act as the scorer
    Citation ‘The great thing in keeping score, after keeping it correctly, is to score neatly’ (W. G. Grace in Outdoor Games and Recreations 1891)
  • verb to cut a mark or ‘notch’ in a tally as a way of recording the making of a run
    Citation ‘They are sole Judges of all Hindrances … and in case of Hindrance may order a notch to be scor’d’ (Laws 1744)

Food

  • verb to make notches, cuts or lines in the surface of a food, e.g. so that herbs or seasoning can be pressed into the food

Information & Library Science

  • noun a printed version of a musical work

Media Studies

  • noun the music that has been composed for a film, play or musical

Publishing

  • verb to draw lines with a sharp edge or rule across paper or card, so that it can fold more easily

Slang

  • exclamation an expression of joy, triumph or relief
  • noun £20. The word has been particularly popular in underworld and police usage since before World War II.
  • noun a success or coup, especially a successful crime, seduction or arrest
  • noun a drug purchase. From the verb form.
  • verb to succeed in gaining sexual satisfaction

Sports

  • noun the total number of points gained by a player or team at the end of or during a match or game
  • noun an action that leads to the gaining of a point or points in a match or game

Investing

  • acronym forspecial claim on residual equity
    (written as SCORE)

Origin & History of “score”

The etymological notion underlying score is of ‘cutting’ – for it is related to English shear. It was borrowed from Old Norse skor, which went back to the same prehistoric Germanic base – *skur-, *sker- ‘cut’ – that produced shear (not to mention share, shore, and short). It had a range of meanings, from ‘notch’ to ‘record kept by cutting notches’, but it was specifically the ‘number twenty’ (presumably originally ‘twenty recorded by cutting notches’) that English at first took over. The other senses followed, perhaps as a result of reborrowing, in the 14th century, but the main modern meaning, ‘number of points made in a game’ (originally as recorded by cutting notches), is a purely English development of the 18th century. Roughly contemporary is ‘written music’, which is said to come from the linking together of related staves with a single common bar line or ‘score’ (in the sense ‘mark’). The verb score ‘mark with lines’ was borrowed in the 14th century from Old Norse skora.
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