a wharf laborer or deck hand, as on the Mississippi River.
an unskilled laborer who lives by odd jobs.
a circus laborer who helps in setting up and taking down the tents and in caring for the animals, equipment, and grounds.
any unskilled laborer working in an oil field. Compare roughneck ( def 2 ).

1865–70, Americanism; roust + about Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
roustabout (ˈraʊstəˌbaʊt)
1.  an unskilled labourer on an oil rig
2.  (Austral) another word for rouseabout
3.  (US), (Canadian) a labourer in a circus or fairground

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Example sentences
The boom line parted and the falling line and ball on the fast line struck a roustabout, inflicting fatal injuries.
Another roustabout was on the deck and was struck by falling debris and died instantly.
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