When you scold someone, you (often angrily) point out and criticize some fault or error. If you forget again to clean up your room, your mom might scold you for it.

Scold can also be used as a noun to describe a person who irritates people by finding fault in everything. Your great aunt Merna, who during the holidays complains about her gifts, criticizes your weight, says the turkey is too dry, and the stuffing is soggy? She's a scold. Maybe she's cranky. Which brings us to the other way we can use scold as a verb: to grumble, grouch, or generally express one's crankiness. This latter meaning has more to do with the attitude of the scolder than the faults of the one being scolded.

Definitions of scold
  1. verb
    censure severely or angrily
    “The mother scolded the child for entering a stranger's car”
    synonyms: bawl out, berate, call down, call on the carpet, chew out, chew up, chide, dress down, have words, jaw, lambast, lambaste, lecture, rag, rebuke, remonstrate, reprimand, reproof, scathe, take to task, trounce, vituperate
    see moresee less
    castigate, chasten, chastise, correct, objurgate
    censure severely
    brush down, tell off
    criticize harshly, usually via an electronic medium
    type of:
    criticise, criticize, knock, pick apart
    find fault with; express criticism of; point out real or perceived flaws
  2. verb
    show one's unhappiness or critical attitude
    “He scolded about anything that he thought was wrong”
    synonyms: grouch, grumble
    see moresee less
    type of:
    complain, kick, kvetch, plain, quetch, sound off
    express complaints, discontent, displeasure, or unhappiness
  3. noun
    someone (especially a woman) who annoys people by constantly finding fault
    synonyms: common scold, nag, nagger, scolder
    see moresee less
    a scolding (even vicious) old woman
    type of:
    disagreeable person, unpleasant person
    a person who is not pleasant or agreeable
Word Family

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