tough: Meaning and Definition of


Pronunciation: (tuf), [key]
— adj., adv., n., v. -er, -est,
  1. strong and durable; not easily broken or cut.
  2. not brittle or tender.
  3. difficult to masticate, as food: a tough steak.
  4. of viscous consistency, as liquid or semiliquid matter: tough molasses.
  5. capable of great endurance; sturdy; hardy: tough troops.
  6. not easily influenced, as a person; unyielding; stubborn: a tough man to work for.
  7. hardened; incorrigible: a tough criminal.
  8. difficult to perform, accomplish, or deal with; hard, trying, or troublesome: a tough problem.
  9. hard to bear or endure (often used ironically): tough luck.
  10. vigorous; severe; violent: a tough struggle.
  11. vicious; rough; rowdyish: a tough character; a tough neighborhood.
  12. practical, realistic, and lacking in sentimentality; tough-minded.
  13. remarkably excellent; first-rate; great.
  14. See hang (def. 50).
  1. in a tough manner.
  1. a ruffian; rowdy.
  1. to endure or resist hardship or adversity.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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