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scar·i·fy1 / ˈskarəˌfī/ • v. (-fies, -fied) [tr.] make cuts or scratches in (the surface of something), in particular: ∎  break up the surface of (soil or pavement). ∎  make shallow incisions in (the skin), esp. as a medical procedure or traditional cosmetic practice: she scarified the snakebite with a paring knife. ∎ fig. criticize severely and hurtfully.DERIVATIVES: scar·i·fi·ca·tion / -fiˈkāshən/ n.scar·i·fy2 / ˈske(ə)rəˌfī/ • v. (-fies, -fied) [tr.] [usu. as adj.] (scarifying) inf. frighten: a scarifying mix of extreme violence and absurdist humor.