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roughneck

[ruhf-nek] /ˈrʌfˌnɛk/
noun
1.
a rough, coarse person; a tough.
2.
any laborer working on an oil-drilling rig.
Compare roustabout (def 4).
verb (used without object)
3.
to work as a roughneck.
Origin
1830-1840
1830-40, Americanism; rough + neck
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for roughneck
  • Fuelling all this is the growing use of methamphetamines-primarily crystal meth, the roughneck's drug of choice.
  • With this the roughneck car driver gave me the first real tongue-lashing of my life.
British Dictionary definitions for roughneck

roughneck

/ˈrʌfˌnɛk/
noun (slang)
1.
a rough or violent person; thug
2.
a worker in an oil-drilling operation
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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Word Origin and History for roughneck
n.

also rough-neck, 1836, "rugged individual," from rough (adj.) + neck (n.). Original context is the Texas frontier, later adpoted to labor organization toughs. Specific sense of "oil rig worker" is recorded from 1917. Cf. redneck.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for roughneck

roughneck

noun
  1. A thug and brawler; plug-ugly, tough: The so-called roughneck is hit with everything (1836+)
  2. A worker or laborer, esp in a circus or on an oil-drilling rig (1917+)
Related Terms

ruffneck


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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19
22
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