- Nautical. any of various fore-and-aft-rigged sailing vessels having a single jib bent to a stay from the stemhead, no bowsprit being used: usually rigged as a sloop.
- something designed or suitable for rough or casual use, as a sturdy jacket, a secondhand car, etc.
- a slapstick comedian or comedy.
- Australian. an itinerant farm hand or ranch hand; an itinerant handyman.
- British Archaic. wanderer.
- suitable for rough use, as a garment: a knockabout jacket and jeans.
- characterized by knocking about; rough; boisterous.
- slapstick: knockabout comedy.
- shiftless; aimless: a knockabout kind of person.
Origin of knockabout
First recorded in 1875–80; noun, adj. use of verb phrase knock about
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for knockabout
She kept the jeans on for her knockabout, but changed her heels for sneakers and slipped into a grey team GB fleece.Jolly Hockey Sticks, Kate!
March 15, 2012
His life was a tragedy written in the terms of knockabout farce.The Moon and Sixpence
W. Somerset Maugham
I present the idea, for what it may be worth, to the concoctors of knockabout turns.The Angel and the Author - and Others
Jerome K. Jerome
As I said when I first came here, I have been a sort of a knockabout, a wanderer.Ralph on the Overland Express
The two best rigs for this class of boat are the cat and knockabout.On Yachts and Yacht Handling
Thomas Fleming Day
Herring and Phyllis could be seen hoisting the sails on the knockabout.The Seven Darlings