Definition of rugged in English:



  • 1(of ground or terrain) having a broken, rocky, and uneven surface.

    ‘a rugged coastline’
    • ‘They undertook the three-day and four-night challenge last week, amongst the rugged terrain of the Isle of Wight.’
    • ‘Moreover, experienced contractors working in rugged terrain will carefully choose the worst ground for the day shift, reserving the better-going for night.’
    • ‘Firefighters there said visibility was less than 100 metres, hampering efforts to locate fires in the region's heavily forested and rugged terrain.’
    • ‘Given the rugged terrain, walking is the best, and often the only, way to reach isolated settlements and experience the real soul of this little-explored land.’
    • ‘By the end of the first day we had crossed the great Salar and had reached the more rugged terrain beyond.’
    • ‘Late that day one of the search crews spotted Doug's body in such rugged terrain they were unable to get to it before dark.’
    • ‘If you've been to Afghanistan or Pakistan, you will see that the terrain is tremendously rugged.’
    • ‘As well as isolation, problems included often rugged terrain, the prohibitive cost of transport, cattle ticks and poison plants.’
    • ‘North and west of the chalkland is the hill and vale country that separates the lowlands of southern England from the more rugged terrain of the west.’
    • ‘They offer a self-guided Round The Island Walk, which traverses rugged terrain taking in volcanic landscapes, mountains and even a rare cloud forest.’
    • ‘Rescuers had to struggle on foot through more than a mile of rugged terrain before helping the passengers.’
    • ‘You can picture the rugged terrain of rocky beaches and stony slopes with ancient smouldering volcanoes standing guard over antique vines.’
    • ‘The triathlon course is of Olympic distance and is spread over a challenging, picturesque and rugged terrain.’
    • ‘They took part in a nine-day trek, covering 50 miles of rugged terrain and taking in some breathtaking scenery.’
    • ‘This trip has it all - breathtaking views on many different summits, cave adventures, and rocky and rugged terrain.’
    • ‘He said the plane had crashed on a steep rocky outcrop, and dense bush and rugged terrain was hampering efforts by police and crash investigators to reach the site.’
    • ‘Due to Canada's rugged terrain and a severe climate a good part of the remainder of the country is inhabited by only a few small communities, scattered across the vast landscape.’
    • ‘They are conducting around-the-clock operations in this very rugged terrain.’
    • ‘The rugged terrain and long distances (up to six hours in the saddle each day) make this trip best for those with riding experience.’
    • ‘He explored its rugged terrain and observed all aspects of island life, sketching and painting local people at their daily toil.’
    rough, uneven, bumpy, rocky, stony, irregular, pitted, broken up, jagged, craggy, precipitous
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    1. 1.1 (of a man) having attractively strong, rough-hewn features.
      ‘he was known for his rugged good looks’
      • ‘He's a rugged man and will show people with his powerful biceps.’
      • ‘She searched his rugged features for any clue that he might be patronizing her, but all she saw was genuine interest.’
      • ‘Aside from his big baritone and wide range of singing styles, he's a rugged guy who loves the great outdoors.’
      • ‘We reached the monastery by mid-morning, and the same rugged fellow who had been good enough to carry my little pack knocked heavily on the door.’
      • ‘The only difference was that Tristan's looks were more rugged, and rougher around the edges, something, apparently, that drove the girls crazy.’
      • ‘Now that she could see his face, she discovered he was vaguely handsome, in a rugged, battered kind of way.’
      • ‘He shook his head and a look of sorrow twisted his rugged features.’
      • ‘His clothes were trendy, and his rugged features were really incredibly attractive.’
      • ‘His rugged features were creased with concern.’
      • ‘He had tough, rugged features and didn't get too fat until he was in his 60s.’
      • ‘His face was intelligent, handsome, rugged and determined without a trace of evil in it; it commanded respect, trust and even love.’
      • ‘Successive tight close-ups of the star's rugged features reveal expressions that are less tensely pensive than muddled and confused.’
      • ‘He had brown straight hair and rugged features.’
      • ‘Directors often talk about rough and rugged Kiwi and Aussie actors.’
      • ‘She is declared the winner, but the rugged man next to her was a close second.’
      • ‘George's face is described for the reader in elegant detail: it is rugged and hard, but in the shadows, tender.’
      • ‘He wasn't conventionally rugged, or square shouldered, or full of muscles.’
      • ‘He was rugged, but his muscles didn't get out of control and he stood six-feet-four-inches from the ground and dwarfed most men that he came across.’
      • ‘As a young man he set out to be one of the rugged men of action whose courage and daring his novels celebrate.’
      • ‘Michael poured some coffee as Marietta came in with the youngest children, he looked over at them and she immediately noticed the fatigue lines on his rugged face.’
      well built, burly, strong, big and strong, muscular, muscly, brawny, strapping, chunky, husky, broad-shouldered, powerfully built, muscle-bound
      strong, craggy, rough-hewn, rough-textured, manly, masculine
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  • 2(of clothing, equipment, etc.) strongly made and capable of withstanding rough handling.

    ‘the binoculars are compact, lightweight, and rugged’
    • ‘It needs to be rugged enough to withstand travel and fashionable enough to be able to bring into a business meeting.’
    • ‘Interspersed with glamour shots of the vehicle, the host emphasizes the rugged effectiveness of the automobile with its absolute comfort and luxury.’
    • ‘These days, many buyers who need passenger space have opted for the more rugged sport-utility vehicles over the tame minivans.’
    • ‘A country with bad roads does not require ceramic engines; it needs vehicles with rugged axles and shocks.’
    • ‘Unusually rugged, these batteries will last for 18 hours or 38 miles.’
    • ‘Uninitiated onlookers could be forgiven for thinking that maybe the wearer had crawled or climbed over a barbed wire fence that took its toll upon the rugged garment.’
    • ‘He wears a sort of rugged, brown, leather motorcycle jacket and motorcycle boots.’
    • ‘It had to be rugged, since the handhelds all needed to withstand heavy daily use and the occasional tumble to a concrete floor.’
    • ‘It is a privately held company, specializing in rugged battlefield imaging systems.’
    • ‘Only few materials that can compare the pure comfort and rugged wearability of this material, so it's no wonder that sheep skin is such a popular choice in slipper design.’
    • ‘These fences are fairly rugged and can withstand a variety of weather conditions, but they require periodic maintenance.’
    • ‘The B-Series provides a rugged vehicle that can carry five adults as well as a wide variety of cargo.’
    • ‘There are details of how they used rugged materials such as glass, concrete and steel alongside velvet, suede and leather.’
    • ‘They are the best, most rugged, and highest performing lights made.’
    • ‘In fact, this is a pretty rugged piece of machinery to withstand this 200-mile an hour impact out there in Utah.’
    • ‘This rugged, secluded house was designed to withstand the elements with style but little maintenance.’
    • ‘The husky sport-utility vehicle looks rugged enough to go just about anywhere.’
    • ‘There's a little wrinkle in the sport utility vehicle's image as a rugged ride.’
    • ‘In the stiffly rugged heaviness of the shoes there is the accumulated tenacity of the slow trudge through the far-spreading and ever-uniform furrows of the field swept by a raw wind.’
    • ‘At this time, the company is only targeting businesses with its rugged handheld product, but consumers may well have their chance if the idea takes off.’
    durable, robust, sturdy, strong, strongly made, hard-wearing, built to last, tough, resilient
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    1. 2.1 Having or requiring toughness and determination.
      ‘a week of rugged, demanding adventure at an outdoor training centre’
      • ‘And although the rugby was not classic it was rugged and determined in an entertaining end to end game.’
      • ‘He was a craggy, bearded bear of a man in a black Stetson, who seemed to embody the rugged individualism of the pioneer.’
      • ‘He is a rugged individualist, who loves his kin but hates even more passionately.’
      • ‘Young clerks and farmers believed the romantic dream of the self-made man and refashioned themselves as rugged individualists armed and equipped for a fresh start in the frontier west.’
      • ‘Secondary roads can be rugged and can tear up vehicles.’
      • ‘No other group so fully embodies the American spirit of bravery and rugged individualism.’
      • ‘And, as every new parent finds out, the first few days can be pretty rugged.’
      • ‘And behind the sparkle lies the rugged determination that has made her what she is today.’
      • ‘We like to think of ourselves as a nation of rugged individualists.’
      • ‘In the novel, Henry's rugged individualism and disdain for society are stylizations of his father's misanthropy.’
      • ‘They developed as rugged individualists who were honest and shrewd, knew no grades of society and had dignity.’
      • ‘Alaskans see themselves as rugged individualists living in the last frontier.’
      • ‘The months roll by, hardening Lian's rugged, and already fiercely independent spirit.’
      • ‘‘We can conduct training in a safe location close to the shore inside the bay, or we can tackle more rugged waters outside the bay,’ he said.’
      • ‘Even that ultimate symbol of rugged individualism, the cowboy, is an endangered species.’
      • ‘Sure you can go for a rugged hike, but strenuous activity isn't required for getting the benefits of exercise.’
      • ‘Western images serve as shorthand images of patriotism, democracy, rugged individualism, and a host of other virtues.’
      • ‘Americans, by contrast, tend to view themselves as rugged individualists.’
      • ‘This, he felt, helped foster the importance placed on rugged individualism and independence that still imbues many discussions of southern values.’
      • ‘Most of the early settlers were young men who were adventurous, rugged, and ambitious.’
      austere, tough, harsh, spartan, exacting, taxing, demanding, difficult, hard, arduous, rigorous, strenuous, onerous
      uncompromising, unwavering, unflinching, firm, tenacious, determined, resolute
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Middle English (in the sense ‘shaggy’, also (of a horse) ‘rough-coated’): probably of Scandinavian origin; compare with Swedish rugga ‘roughen’, also with rug.