- having a roughly broken, rocky, hilly, or jagged surface: rugged ground.
- (of a face) wrinkled or furrowed, as by experience or the endurance of hardship.
- roughly irregular, heavy, or hard in outline or form; craggy: Lincoln's rugged features.
- rough, harsh, or stern, as persons or nature.
- full of hardship and trouble; severe; hard; trying: a rugged life.
- tempestuous; stormy: rugged weather.
- harsh to the ear: rugged sounds.
- rude, uncultivated, or unrefined.
- homely or plain: rugged fare.
- capable of enduring hardship, wear, etc.; strong and tough: rugged floor covering; a rugged lumberjack.
Origin of rugged
SynonymsSee more synonyms for rugged on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for rugged
He called out the conformism hiding in the pose of rugged individuality.Glenn Beck Is Now Selling Hipster Clothes. Really.
Ana Marie Cox
December 20, 2014
Utah, USA Brigham Young was definitely onto something when he sought to build his Mormon “Zion” in the rugged hinterland of Utah.Why Your Next Vacation Will Be in Turkmenistan
December 13, 2014
But what both men had in common was a streak of rugged individualism, stubbornness, and personal vision.The Fight to Ban ‘Birth of a Nation’
November 20, 2014
Marquez is rugged, takes a good punch, and is a pretty defensive fighter.If Manny Pacquiao Loses to Timothy Bradley, This May Be the End
April 12, 2014
To be sure, there are remnants of an Old West mentality of a rugged, tough-minded, if not slow to change attitude.The Real Arizona Isn’t Anti-Gay
February 27, 2014
"Old John will bide at home, sire," said the rugged soldier.The White Company
Arthur Conan Doyle
But the way was rugged, broken, and in spots nearly impassable.The Last of the Mohicans
James Fenimore Cooper
His voice sounded strangely soft from one so large and rugged.Tiverton Tales
His rugged face was deeply lined, and I noticed a little gray in his hair.The Harbor
Did Orpheus by his lay humanize the rugged beasts and teach the forests to listen?Imogen
- having an uneven or jagged surface
- rocky or steeprugged scenery
- (of the face) strong-featured or furrowed
- rough, severe, or stern in character
- without refinement or culture; ruderugged manners
- involving hardship; harshhe leads a rugged life in the mountains
- difficult or harda rugged test
- (of equipment, machines, etc) designed to withstand rough treatment or use in rough conditionsa handheld rugged computer which can survive being submerged in water
- mainly US and Canadian sturdy or strong; robust
Word Origin and History for rugged
c.1300, "rough, shaggy, careworn" (originally of animals), from Old Norse rogg "shaggy tuft" (see rug). "The precise relationship to ragged is not quite clear, but the stem is no doubt ultimately the same" [OED]. Meaning "vigorous, strong, robust" is American English, by 1848.
We were challenged with a peace-time choice between the American system of rugged individualism and a European philosophy of diametrically opposed doctrines -- doctrines of paternalism and state socialism. [Herbert Hoover, speech in New York, Oct. 22, 1928]
Hoover said the phrase was not his own, and it is attested from 1897, though not in a patriotic context. Related: Ruggedly; ruggedness.