tough

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From Middle English tough, towgh, tou, toȝ, from Old English tōh (tough, tenacious, holding fast together; pliant; sticky, glutinous, clammy), from Proto-Germanic *tanhuz (fitting; clinging; tenacious; tough), from Proto-Indo-European *denḱ- (to bite). Cognate with Scots teuch (tough), North Frisian tōch, tūch (tough), Dutch taai (tough), Low German tage, taag, taë, taa (tough), German zäh (tough), dialectal German zach (tough; boring).

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

tough (comparative tougher, superlative toughest)

  1. Strong and resilient; sturdy.
    The tent, made of tough canvas, held up to many abuses.
  2. (of food) Difficult to cut or chew.
    To soften a tough cut of meat, the recipe suggested simmering it for hours.
  3. Rugged or physically hardy.
    Only a tough species will survive in the desert.
  4. Stubborn.
    He had a reputation as a tough negotiator.
  5. (of weather etc) Harsh or severe.
  6. Rowdy or rough.
    A bunch of the tough boys from the wrong side of the tracks threatened him.
  7. (of questions, etc.) Difficult or demanding.
    This is a tough crowd.
  8. (material science) Undergoing plastic deformation before breaking.

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

Interjection[edit]

tough

  1. (slang) Used to indicate lack of sympathy
    If you don't like it, tough!

Translations[edit]

Noun[edit]

tough (plural toughs)

  1. A person who obtains things by force; a thug or bully.
    They were doing fine until they encountered a bunch of toughs from the opposition.

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

Verb[edit]

tough (third-person singular simple present toughs, present participle toughing, simple past and past participle toughed)

  1. To endure.
    • 2009, Paul Walsh, You and I and Others, ISBN 1462819311, page 64 - 65:
      We shall reminisce on how we toughed it through the winters as they reached the firm, long arm around to give the cold embrace, with ardor seldom loosed till warm winds Marched or Apriled in to soften winter's knuckles -- send rivulets of courage down to dandelions and tulips.
    • 2011, Henry David Thoreau, ‎Damion Searls, The Journal of Henry David Thoreau, 1837-1861, ISBN 1590174402, page 254:
      “No,” said Minott, “I've toughed it through the winter, and i want to stay and hear the bluebirds once more.
    • 2012, Jerry Hopkins -, Extreme Cuisine: The Weird and Wonderful Foods That People Eat, ISBN 1462904726:
      Universal Plant Edibility Test The following sounds like a lot of work—it is!—but that's because it comes from the US Army Survival Manual as republished in 1994 as "a civilian's best guide for toughing it, anyplace in the world...a must for campers, hikers, explorers, pilots, and others whose vocation or avocations require familiarity with the wilderness or out-of-doors..."
  2. To toughen.

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

Anagrams[edit]


German[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From English tough; see also "taff".

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

tough (comparative tougher, superlative am toughsten or am toughesten)

  1. (slang) Alternative form of taff: tough; robust; assertive and not overly sensitive

Declension[edit]

declension with am toughsten
declension with am toughesten

Further reading[edit]