Definition of ruffian in English:

ruffian

Line breaks: ruf|fian
Pronunciation: /ˈrʌfɪən
 
/

noun

Derivatives

ruffianism

noun
More example sentences
  • And the state tolerated ruffianism so long as disorder was kept at a minimum, and its authority was not fundamentally challenged.

ruffianly

adverb
More example sentences
  • I do apologise for my ruffianly appearance, ma'am.
  • Presently the man whistled and another ruffianly person sprang out from near the gate at the corner of the Grotto-field and joined his companion.
  • Such rowdy, ruffianly, and apparently motiveless violence has a much longer history than the term hooligan.

Origin

late 15th century: from Old French ruffian, from Italian ruffiano, perhaps from dialect rofia 'scab, scurf', of Germanic origin.

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