adj. rough·er, rough·est
a. Having a surface marked by irregularities, protuberances, or ridges; not smooth: planed the board so it was no longer rough.
b. Coarse or shaggy to the touch: a rough scratchy blanket.
a. Difficult to travel over or through: the rough terrain of the highlands.
b. Characterized by violent motion; turbulent: rough waters.
c. Difficult to endure or live through, especially because of harsh or inclement weather: a rough winter.
d. Unpleasant or difficult: had a rough time during the exam.
a. Characterized by or done with violence or forcefulness: a sport noted for rough play; a package that received rough handling.
b. Boisterous, disorderly, or given to violence: ran with a rough crowd.
c. Characterized by violence or crime: lives in a rough neighborhood.
d. Lacking polish or finesse: rough manners.
4. Harsh to the ear: a rough raspy sound.
5. Being in a natural state: rough diamonds.
6. Not perfected, completed, or fully detailed: a rough drawing; rough carpentry.
1. The surface or part of something that is uneven or coarse: felt the rough of his chin.
a. Rugged overgrown terrain.
b. Sports The area of a golf hole in which the grass is left unmowed or is cut to a length longer than that of the fairway.
a. A disorderly, unrefined, or unfinished state.
b. A difficult or disagreeable aspect or condition of something: observed politics in the rough when working as an intern on Capitol Hill.
4. A person given to violent or disorderly behavior; a rowdy.
tr.v. roughed, rough·ing, roughs
a. To treat roughly or with physical violence: roughed up his opponent.
b. Sports To treat (an opposing player) with unnecessary roughness, often in violation of the rules: was ejected from the game for roughing the passer.
2. To prepare or indicate in an unfinished form: rough out a house plan.
In a rough manner; roughly: The engine began to run rough and faltered.
To live without the usual comforts and conveniences: roughed it in a small hunting shack.
[Middle English, from Old English rūh.]
(click for a larger image)rough
left: rough jade
right: polished jade
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.