rascal

[ras-kuhl]
noun
1.
a base, dishonest, or unscrupulous person.
2.
a mischievous person or animal: That child is a real rascal.

Origin:
1300–50; Middle English rascaile, raskaille < Old French rascaille rabble; perhaps akin to rash2

rascallike, adjective


1. rapscallion, scamp, villain, miscreant, scapegrace. See knave.
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World English Dictionary
rascal (ˈrɑːskəl)
 
n
1.  a disreputable person; villain
2.  a mischievous or impish rogue
3.  an affectionate or mildly reproving term for a child or old man: you little rascal; the wicked old rascal kissed her
4.  obsolete a person of lowly birth
 
adj
5.  obsolete (prenominal)
 a.  belonging to the mob or rabble
 b.  dishonest; knavish
 
[C14: from Old French rascaille rabble, perhaps from Old Norman French rasque mud, filth]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

rascal
early 14c., rascaile "people of the lowest class, rabble of an army," from O.Fr. rascaille "outcast, rabble" (12c.), perhaps from rasque "mud, filth, scab, dregs," from V.L. *rasicare "to scrape" (see rash (n.)). The singular form is first attested mid-15c.; extended sense
of "low, dishonest person" is from 1580s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
He has to be clever, since he's hardly the only rascal on board.
It is one of the quickest comeuppances for a rascal we've ever seen.
We had to laugh at the little rascal in spite of ourselves.
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