Word Origin See more synonyms for rakehell on Thesaurus.com a licentious or dissolute man; rake. Also rake·hell·y . [ reyk-hel-ee] /ˈreɪkˌhɛl i/ dissolute; profligate. Origin of rakehell 1540–50;
alteration by folk etymology (see
Middle English rakel
(adj.) rash, rough, coarse, hasty (akin to
Old Norse reikall
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
British Dictionary definitions for rakehell adjective Also: rakehelly profligate; dissolute Word Origin
rake 1 + hell; but compare Middle English rakel rash
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for rakehell n.
1540s, possibly an alteration (by association with
rake (n.1) and Hell) of Middle English rakel (adj.) "hasty, rash, headstrong," probably from raken "to go, proceed," from Old English racian "to go forward, move, hasten," of unknown origin. Cf. rakeshame (n.) "one who lives shamefully" (1590s).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper