unruly

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English unruly ‎(unquiet, restless), interpreted as un- + rule + -ly (compare Middle English ruly, reuli ‎(subject to a religious rule, regular)), but also representing a modified continuation of earlier Middle English unrouly, unroly ‎(unquiet, restless), equivalent to un- +‎ roolie. The latter is perhaps from or influenced by an Old Norse word related to Danish urolig ‎(restless), Swedish orolig ‎(restless), Icelandic órólegur ‎(agitated). Compare also Middle English unroo, unro ‎(unrest). More at roo.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

unruly ‎(comparative unrulier, superlative unruliest)

  1. wild; uncontrolled
    The police gathered to contain the unruly mob.

Translations[edit]

Noun[edit]

unruly ‎(plurale tantum)

  1. People who behave in unruly manner.
    And indeed, since the unruly were removed, the system has proceeded in the most quiet and satisfactory manner.