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
Related forms
Can be confusedrough ruff
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for rough up (1 of 2)

rough up

verb (tr, adverb)

informal to treat violently; beat up
to cause (feathers, hair, etc) to stand up by rubbing against the grain

British Dictionary definitions for rough up (2 of 2)

Derived Formsroughness, 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 up (1 of 2)

rough up

Manhandle, subject to physical abuse, as in The gang was about to rough him up when the police arrived. [First half of 1900s]


Idioms and Phrases with rough up (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.