Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know


[roob] /rub/
noun, Informal.
an unsophisticated person from a rural area; hick.
Origin of rube
1895-1900; generic use of Rube; compare earlier use of Reuben in same sense


[roob] /rub/
a male given name, form of Reuben.


[gohld-burg] /ˈgoʊld bɜrg/
Arthur Joseph, 1908–90, U.S. jurist, statesman, and diplomat: associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court 1962–65; ambassador to the U.N. 1965–68.
Reuben Lucius ("Rube") 1883–1970, U.S. cartoonist, whose work often depicts deviously complex and impractical inventions. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for rube
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Both rube and he were expert fishers, and between them they soon had enough for a good supper.

    Kiddie the Scout Robert Leighton
  • We were away before daylight, and I never saw Uncle rube again.

    Labrador Days Wilfred Thomason Grenfell
  • I was glad to hear rube talk in this manner, and I so signified to him.

    The War Trail Mayne Reid
  • It was only the untiring care of rube and his wife, and Seth, that pulled her through.

    The Watchers of the Plains Ridgewell Cullum
  • "Hold the lantern, rube," he whispered, as he struck upon the back of the fire-place with the hammer.

    Bats in the Wall P. T. Raymond
  • Old rube had expected Seth to join him outside for their usual smoke.

    The Watchers of the Plains Ridgewell Cullum
  • The rube—who is all that a rube should be—appears in a whole series of these stories and is a character you won't forget.

British Dictionary definitions for rube


(US & Canadian, slang) an unsophisticated countryman
Word Origin
C20: probably from the name Reuben
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for rube

1896, reub, from shortened form of masc. proper name Reuben (q.v.), which is attested from 1804 as a conventional type of name for a country man.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for rube



Green; newbie: a rube police force


  1. A rustic; farmer; hayseed
  2. An unsophisticated person, esp a newcomer; greenhorn
  3. A member of the audienceorpublic;citizen:MrToddknowshowtopanic the rubes (Circus)

Related Terms

hey rube

[short for Reuben]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for rube

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for rube

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for rube