Date: 1300-1400
Language: Late Latin
Origin: scandere, from Latin, 'to climb'


1 verb
Related topics: Computers, Electrical
scan1 past tense and past participle scanned, present participle scanning

look at

[transitive] to examine an area carefully but quickly, often because you are looking for a particular person or thing:
He scanned the horizon, but there was no sign of the ship.
She scanned his face, looking for signs of what he was thinking.
Video cameras scanned the car park.
scan something for something
I scanned the street for people I knew.


also scan through [transitive] to read something quickly [= skim]
scan something for something
I scanned the page for her name.
She scanned through the paper.

see inside

[transitive]TEE if a machine scans something, it passes an electrical beam over it to form a picture of what is inside it [↪ scanner]:
All luggage has to be scanned at the airport.
They scanned his brain for signs of damage.


[transitive] if you scan a document or picture, you put it into a machine attached to a computer so that the information in the document can be taken into the computer and stored there [↪ scanner]
scan something into something
You scan the text into the computer, then edit it.


[intransitive] technical poetry that scans has a correct regular pattern of beats
to read parts of something: dip into, flick/leaf through, browse through

to read something quickly: skim, scan

to read something carefully: pore over, scrutinize

to read something long and boring: plough through British English/plow through American English, wade through

clear enough to read: legible

not clear enough to read: illegible

someone who is unable to read: illiterate

someone who likes reading very much: bookworm

See also

Dictionary results for "scan"
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