One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1Preliminary, unpolished, or unfinished work. Also concrete: the result of this.
2Difficult and arduous physical labour; specifically (with the) the heavier part of housework.
Mid 16th century; earliest use found in Arthur Golding (d. 1606), translator. From rough + work.
rough work/ˈrʌf ˌwəːk/
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