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ruffian

[ ruhf-ee-uhn, ruhf-yuhn ]
/ ˈrʌf i ən, ˈrʌf yən /
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noun

a tough, lawless person; roughneck; bully.

adjective

Also ruf·fi·an·ly. tough; lawless; brutal.

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Origin of ruffian

1525–35; <Middle French <Italian ruffiano, perhaps <Langobardic *hruf scurf + Italian -ano-an
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for ruffian

ruffian
/ (ˈrʌfɪən) /

noun

a violent or lawless person; hoodlum or villain
ruffianism, nounruffianly, adjective
C16: from Old French rufien, from Italian ruffiano, perhaps related to Langobardic hruf scurf, scabbiness
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
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