If you hear someone shout "Everybody scatter!” that person wants everyone to spread out and leave the area. Scatter is a verb that means "to separate suddenly and spread out in different directions."

Scatter is sometimes used as a noun to refer to something that has been scattered. If you have clothes strewn all over your room, you might say there is a scatter of clothes on the floor. More commonly, though, scatter is used as a verb meaning “to spread about.” You might scatter grass seed on your front lawn in the spring. Scatter can also mean “break up or disperse.” The police, for instance, might scatter an unruly mob or gathering.

Definitions of scatter
  1. verb
    cause to separate and go in different directions
    “She waved her hand and scattered the crowds”
    synonyms: break up, dispel, disperse, dissipate
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    cause to break up or cease to function
    type of:
    divide, separate
    make a division or separation
  2. verb
    cause to separate
    synonyms: break up, disperse
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    scatter (radiation) by the atoms of the medium through which it passes
    type of:
    change integrity
    change in physical make-up
  3. verb
    move away from each other
    “The children scattered in all directions when the teacher approached”
    synonyms: disperse, dissipate, spread out
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    aerosolise, aerosolize
    become dispersed as an aerosol
    scatter or part
    be dispersed in a volley
    type of:
    part, separate, split
    go one's own way; move apart
  4. verb
    strew or distribute over an area
    scatter cards across the table”
    synonyms: spread, spread out
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    manure, muck
    spread manure, as for fertilization
    birdlime, lime
    spread birdlime on branches to catch birds
    spread something around something
    spread throughout a given area
    type of:
    circulate, distribute, pass around, pass on
    cause to be distributed
  5. verb
    distribute loosely
    “He scattered gun powder under the wagon”
    synonyms: disperse, dot, dust, sprinkle
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    scatter in a mass or jet of droplets
    be discharged in sprays of liquid
    plash, spatter, splash, splatter, splosh, swash
    dash a liquid upon or against
    splash, splosh, sprinkle
    cause (a liquid) to spatter about, especially with force
    dot or sprinkle with sparkling or glittering objects
    aerosolise, aerosolize
    disperse as an aerosol
    spray or sprinkle with
    atomise, atomize
    spray very finely
    spray finely or cover with mist
    spray or irrigate (a body part) with a syringe
    make a puddle by splashing water
    slosh, slosh around, slush, slush around
    spill or splash copiously or clumsily
    sprinkle as if with salt
    drizzle, moisten
    moisten with fine drops
    type of:
    pour forth or release
  6. verb
    sow by scattering
    scatter seeds”
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    type of:
    seed, sow
    place (seeds) in or on the ground for future growth
  7. noun
    the act of scattering
    synonyms: scattering, strewing
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    type of:
    spread, spreading
    act of extending over a wider scope or expanse of space or time
  8. noun
    a haphazard distribution in all directions
    synonyms: spread
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    the spatial property of being spread out over a wide area or through a large volume
    type of:
    dispersion, distribution
    the spatial or geographic property of being scattered about over a range, area, or volume
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