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Meaning & Definition of Tough in English

English

Tough

/təf/

noun

1. Someone who learned to fight in the streets rather than being formally trained in the sport of boxing

    synonym:
  • street fighter
  • ,
  • tough

2. An aggressive and violent young criminal

    synonym:
  • hood
  • ,
  • hoodlum
  • ,
  • goon
  • ,
  • punk
  • ,
  • thug
  • ,
  • tough
  • ,
  • toughie
  • ,
  • strong-armer

3. A cruel and brutal fellow

    synonym:
  • bully
  • ,
  • tough
  • ,
  • hooligan
  • ,
  • ruffian
  • ,
  • roughneck
  • ,
  • rowdy
  • ,
  • yob
  • ,
  • yobo
  • ,
  • yobbo

adjective

1. Not given to gentleness or sentimentality

  • "A tough character"
    synonym:
  • tough

2. Very difficult

  • Severely testing stamina or resolution
  • "A rugged competitive examination"
  • "The rugged conditions of frontier life"
  • "The competition was tough"
  • "It's a tough life"
  • "It was a tough job"
    synonym:
  • rugged
  • ,
  • tough

3. Physically toughened

  • "The tough bottoms of his feet"
    synonym:
  • tough
  • ,
  • toughened

4. Substantially made or constructed

  • "Sturdy steel shelves"
  • "Sturdy canvas"
  • "A tough all-weather fabric"
  • "Some plastics are as tough as metal"
    synonym:
  • sturdy
  • ,
  • tough

5. Violent and lawless

  • "The more ruffianly element"
  • "Tough street gangs"
    synonym:
  • ruffianly
  • ,
  • tough

6. Feeling physical discomfort or pain (`tough' is occasionally used colloquially for `bad')

  • "My throat feels bad"
  • "She felt bad all over"
  • "He was feeling tough after a restless night"
    synonym:
  • bad
  • ,
  • tough

7. Resistant to cutting or chewing

    synonym:
  • tough

8. Unfortunate or hard to bear

  • "Had hard luck"
  • "A tough break"
    synonym:
  • hard
  • ,
  • tough

9. Making great mental demands

  • Hard to comprehend or solve or believe
  • "A baffling problem"
  • "I faced the knotty problem of what to have for breakfast"
  • "A problematic situation at home"
    synonym:
  • baffling
  • ,
  • elusive
  • ,
  • knotty
  • ,
  • problematic
  • ,
  • problematical
  • ,
  • tough

Examples of using

Yes, this exam is quite tough.
Who is this tough guy?
She is not as tough as she seems.