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- (intransitive) To rush or hurry.
- I'll have to hustle to get there on time.
- (transitive) To con or deceive; especially financially.
- The guy tried to hustle me into buying into a bogus real estate deal.
- (transitive) To bundle, to stow something quickly.
- To dance the hustle, a disco dance.
- To play deliberately badly at a game or sport in an attempt to encourage players to challenge.
- To sell sex, to work as a pimp.
- To be a prostitute, to exchange use of one's body for sexual purposes for money.
- (informal) To put a lot of effort into one's work.
- To push someone roughly, to crowd, to jostle.
- 1915, G[eorge] A. Birmingham [pseudonym; James Owen Hannay], chapter I, in Gossamer, New York, N.Y.: George H. Doran Company, OCLC 5661828:
- There is an hour or two, after the passengers have embarked, which is disquieting and fussy. […] Passengers wander restlessly about or hurry, with futile energy, from place to place. Pushing men hustle each other at the windows of the purser's office, under pretence of expecting letters or despatching telegrams.
- (informal) To work.
- Dutch: hosselen
to rush or hurry
to con or deceive
hustle (plural hustles)
- A state of busy activity.
- A propensity to work hard and get things done; ability to hustle.
- 1934, Agatha Christie, chapter 3, in Murder on the Orient Express, London: HarperCollins, published 2017, page 26:
- 'It's just natural for the folks here to be indolent,' she said. 'They just haven't got any hustle in them.'
- A type of disco dance.
- (prison slang) An activity, such as prostitution or reselling stolen items, that a prisoner uses to earn money in prison.
rush or hurry