Idioms

    in the rough, in a rough, crude, or unfinished state: The country has an exciting potential, but civilization there is still in the rough.
    rough it, to live without the customary comforts or conveniences; endure rugged conditions: We really roughed it on our fishing trip.

Origin of rough

before 1000; Middle English (adj. and noun); Old English rūh (adj.); cognate with Dutch ruig, German rauh

ANTONYMS FOR rough

Related forms

Can be confused

rough ruff
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for rough it

Derived Forms

roughness, noun

Word Origin for rough

Old English rūh; related to Old Norse ruksa, Middle Dutch rūge, rūwe, German rauh
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

Idioms and Phrases with rough it (1 of 2)

rough it


Do without the usual comforts and conveniences, as in We spent our vacation roughing it in a log cabin. This idiom was first recorded in 1768. Mark Twain used it as the title of an account of his experiences in Nevada (Roughing It, 1872).

Idioms and Phrases with rough it (2 of 2)

rough


In addition to the idioms beginning with rough

  • rough and ready
  • rough and tumble
  • rough it
  • rough on, be
  • rough out
  • rough up

also see:

  • diamond in the rough
  • ride roughshod over
  • take the rough with the smooth
  • when the going gets rough
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.