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Ruffian definitions

Webster's 1828 Dictionary

RUF'FIAN, n.
A boisterous, brutal fellow; a fellow ready for any desperate crime; a robber; a cut-throat; a murderer.
RUF'FIAN, a. Brutal; savagely boisterous; as ruffian rage.
RUF'FIAN, v.i. To play the ruffian; to rage; to raise tumult.

WordNet (r) 3.0 (2005)

n
1: a cruel and brutal fellow [syn: bully, tough, hooligan, ruffian, roughneck, rowdy, yob, yobo, yobbo]

Merriam Webster's

noun Etymology: Middle French rufian Date: 1531 a brutal person ; bully ruffian adjective ruffianism noun ruffianly adjective

Oxford Reference Dictionary

n. a violent lawless person. Derivatives: ruffianism n. ruffianly adv. Etymology: F ruf(f)ian f. It. ruffiano, perh. f. dial. rofia scurf

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Ruffian Ruf"fian (? or ?; 277), n. [F. rufien, OF. ruffen, ruffian, pimp. libertine, ake; cf. pr. & Sp. rufian, It. ruffiano; all perhaps of German or Dutch origin; cf. G. raufen to pluck, scuffle, fight, OD. roffen to pander. Cf. Ruffle to grow urbulent.] 1. A pimp; a pander; also, a paramour. [Obs.] he [her husband] is no sooner abroad than she is instantly at home, reveling with her ruffians. --Bp. Reynolds. 2. A boisterous, cruel, brutal fellow; a desperate fellow ready for murderous or cruel deeds; a cutthroat. Wilt thou on thy deathbed play the ruffian? --Shak.

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Ruffian Ruf"fian, a. brutal; cruel; savagely boisterous; murderous; as, ruffian rage.

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Ruffian Ruf"fian, v. i. To play the ruffian; to rage; to raise tumult. [R.] --Shak.

Collin's Cobuild Dictionary

(ruffians) A ruffian is a man who behaves violently and is involved in crime. (OLD-FASHIONED) ...gangs of ruffians who lurk about intent on troublemaking. N-COUNT

Soule's Dictionary of English Synonyms

I. n. Villain, miscreant, caitiff, rascal, scoundrel, wretch, monster, robber, cut-throat, murderer. II. a. Savage, brutal, savagely boisterous, tumultuous, raging, violent.

1811 Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue

The devil. Cant.--May the ruffian nab the cuffin queer, and let the harmanbeck trine with his kinchins about his colquarren; may the Devil take the justice, and let the constable be hanged with his children about his neck. The ruffian cly thee; the Devil take thee. Ruffian cook ruffian, who scalded the Devil in his feathers; a saying of a bad cook. Ruffian sometimes also means, a justice.

Moby Thesaurus

Babbitt, Philistine, arriviste, bad boy, battler, belligerent, belted knight, bickerer, blade, booger, boor, bounder, bourgeois, bravo, brawler, bucko, buffoon, bugger, bully, bullyboy, cad, churl, clown, combatant, competitor, contender, contestant, cutthroat, cutup, desperado, devil, disputant, duelist, elf, enfant terrible, enforcer, epicier, fencer, feuder, fighter, fighting cock, foilsman, funmaker, gamecock, gladiator, goon, gorilla, groundling, gunman, guttersnipe, hatchet man, hell-raiser, hellcat, hood, hoodlum, hooligan, ill-bred fellow, imp, joker, jokester, jouster, killer, knave, knight, little devil, little monkey, little rascal, looby, lout, low fellow, mad dog, militant, minx, mischief, mischief-maker, mucker, nouveau riche, parvenu, peasant, pixie, plug-ugly, practical joker, prankster, puck, punk, quarreler, rapscallion, rascal, ribald, rioter, rival, rogue, rough, roughneck, rowdy, sabreur, scamp, scapegrace, scrapper, scuffler, squabbler, strong arm, strong-arm man, strong-armer, struggler, swashbuckler, sword, swordplayer, swordsman, thug, tilter, tough, tussler, upstart, vulgarian, vulgarist, wag, wrangler, yahoo, yokel



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