1. An irritating skin sensation causing a desire to scratch.
2. Any of various skin disorders, such as scabies, marked by intense irritation and itching.
3. A restless desire or craving for something: an itch to travel.
v. itched, itch·ing, itch·es
a. To feel, have, or produce an itch.
b. To have a desire to scratch.
2. To have a persistent, restless craving.
1. To cause to itch.
2. To scratch (an itch).
[Middle English yicche, from Old English gicce, from giccan, to itch; akin to Dutch jeuken, German jucken, and Old Saxon jukkian.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.