Scratch the surface

Investigate or treat something superficially, as in This feed-the-hungry program only scratches the surface of the problem, or Her survey course barely scratches the surface of economic history. This metaphoric term transfers shallow markings made in a stone or other material to a shallow treatment of a subject or issue. [ Early 1900s ]


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  • Scratch together

    verb 1. (transitive, adverb) to assemble with difficulty: he scratched up a team for the football match

  • Scratch up

    scrape up

  • Scratch video

    noun 1. the technique or practice of recycling images from films or television to make collages

  • Scratch-wig

    noun 1. a short wig, especially one that covers only part of the head.

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