Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

EXAMPLES FROM THE WEB FOR TOUGH

He was tough, but the ranch horses of John Merchant came out from a night of rest.

If the mushrooms are found to be tough, the skin should be peeled off.

Even when they did pick out novels, they were just as tough as the history books.

This game's too tough fer me—I'll ship me plugs to Gravesend.

There he met two other tough ones like himself,—Duroc and Junot.

The ankle was small and curved like an axe handle and looked as tough.

That same world is a tough wrestler, and has a bear's gripe.

All other parts are for this purpose comparatively hard and tough.

All other pieces are, for this purpose, comparatively hard and tough.

If a goose is old it is useless to cook it, as when hard and tough it cannot be eaten.

WORD ORIGIN

Old English toh "difficult to break or chew," from Proto-Germanic *tankhuz (cf. Middle Low German tege, Middle Dutch taey, Dutch taai, Old High German zach, German zäh). See rough for spelling change.

Figurative sense of "strenuous, difficult, hard to beat" is first recorded c.1200; that of "hard to do, trying, laborious" is from 1610s. Verb tough it "endure the experience" is first recorded 1830, American English. Tough guy first recorded 1932. Tough-minded first recorded 1907 in William James. Tough luck first recorded 1912; tough shit is from 1946.

MORE RELATED WORDS FOR TOUGH

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.