Definition of hassle in English:



  • 1Irritating inconvenience.

    ‘the hassle of losing a high security key’
    ‘traveling can be a hassle’
    • ‘Dan Cowman said he did not think a pub would cause any more problems or hassle than those being experienced in the area at the moment.’
    • ‘With all of the preparation and hassle and complicated plane rides, you might be wondering if it's worth it to take such a big trip with a young child.’
    • ‘Getting rid of all the fuss and bother or hassle of looking after your contact lenses, it becomes part of the body and it's not an invasive procedure.’
    • ‘Couples can resolve the problems of divorcing without becoming involved in the stress, hassle and financial cost of a court settlement.’
    • ‘Who in their right mind would dedicate months of stress, hassle and intrusion into their lives for the sake of at worst #500 or at best #1500.’
    • ‘This reduces considerably the travel time and hassle for passengers since we operate over the Polar route.’
    • ‘It can involve a lot of hassle and it is our job as a company to take the pain out of the process.’
    • ‘Let this be a warning to all who wish to save themselves the headache and hassle.’
    • ‘But anyway I got the webcam, took it to work, installed it on my pc there with no fuss or hassle, just pop in the cd, agree to the terms and conditions and then we're good to go.’
    • ‘Whatever the reasons for being unhappy, the internet can become a tempting distraction from the heartache and hassle of tackling relationship problems.’
    • ‘Basically, it does exactly what it says on the tin with the minimum of fuss and hassle.’
    • ‘Driving to Dublin has become such a nightmare that many people now prefer to go by air, or rail, which has far less hassle involved.’
    • ‘‘It's caused a lot of inconvenience and hassle but it's not going to affect our business,’ he said.’
    • ‘The group is encouraging shoppers to forget the stress, hassle, traffic and parking problems of cities and their crowded shops.’
    • ‘Given the bureaucratic hassle involved in getting a permit and logistics, organizing a climbing expedition can be a daunting task.’
    • ‘Daily hassles refer to ‘irritating, frustrating, and distressing demands that characterize everyday transactions with the environment’.’
    • ‘The inconvenience and hassles involved, particularly when patients are illiterate and unable to communicate meaningfully with doctors, are formidable.’
    • ‘Just the thought of going into a fish shop and knowing you can get something that's gluten free with no hassle and no fuss is wonderful.’
    • ‘The entire trip was about 2hrs flying time. No stress, no hassle and most of all no security check points.’
    • ‘I've talked one-on-one with quite a few customers, so I know this caused some of you considerable hassle and inconvenience.’
    inconvenience, bother, nuisance, problem, struggle, difficulty, annoyance, irritation, thorn in one's flesh, thorn in one's side, bane of one's life
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    1. 1.1Deliberate harassment.
      ‘if they give you any hassle, just tell them it's for me’
      • ‘We have to pick our way to sanity through a cacophony of pressure and hassle which are not the product of any one moment in time but of the times in which we live.’
      • ‘But misunderstandings and mistrust do exist, and some have resulted in hassle and harassment.’
      • ‘After it was discovered that I was a Christian, I was subjected to hassle and harassment on a daily basis and management would not do anything about it.’
      persecution, harrying, pestering, badgering, intimidation, bother, annoyance, aggravation, irritation, pressure, pressurization, force, coercion, molestation
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    2. 1.2North American A disagreement; a quarrel.
      ‘an election-year hassle with farmers’
      disagreement, quarrel, argument, dispute, altercation, squabble, wrangle, shouting match, difference of opinion, contretemps, falling-out, war of words
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[WITH OBJECT]informal
  • Harass; pester.

    ‘squeegee men who hassle drivers for change at stoplights’
    • ‘If the aim this time is to find asylum-seekers who have disappeared, British ethnic minorities will, inevitably, be hassled.’
    • ‘It'd be nice if the government leaned a bit further left, if the state and religion would actually file for divorce, and if we stopped hassling people for not being able to find work.’
    • ‘My dad is hassling me because I never return his calls.’
    • ‘When a conservative pundit ‘knows’ something to be true, don't go hassling him with contrary evidence.’
    • ‘All you have to do is to keep hassling people in television, ring them up, ask if you can get work experience, see if you can borrow someone's TV camera and start filming things around.’
    • ‘Even though they had very obviously secured victory and there was no way back for Wexford still they harassed and hassled the visitors.’
    • ‘I spent five weeks hassling insurance companies, dealing with car hire firms, listening to endless tunes on answerphones, as well as working full time and running my family around.’
    • ‘I'll just keep calling you and hassling you until you do…’
    • ‘Now I've been a biker since I old enough to work a kick-stand so getting hassled by the fuzz is nothing new.’
    • ‘Sure they were bothered by the state police and hassled by the communist militia, but that just spiced up the spirit of adventure.’
    • ‘I'm constantly stressing about watching over everyone, hassling them to make sure they pay.’
    • ‘He urged anyone who had been hassled at a cash machine by anyone of Eastern European appearance to check their accounts and contact police if necessary.’
    • ‘I got used to the dealers and hookers hassling me, and they seemed to recognise by my purposeful stride that I was a local and left me alone for the best part.’
    • ‘By day, he has to remain out of sight, but in the evening, he pushes his cart out and chooses a place where he is unlikely to be hassled by the police.’
    • ‘They harry, hassle, then show the odd touch of greatness to get a result.’
    • ‘People (yes you know who you are) are always hassling me to change what I do if I don't like it and I do know they are right.’
    • ‘Yeah, I could have hassled you for an autograph worth £400 on e-bay.’
    • ‘Back to the ‘saloon’ in the town's Square the gang are in full flight picking fights, hassling girls and general causing mayhem.’
    • ‘We are harried and hassled by time, the clock is our master, the ghost that turns up at every feast.’
    • ‘I'm VERY excited to report that Zinnia tells us that it is possible to get European lentils - I'm going to start hassling my local stores and stalls.’
    harass, pester, nag, go on at, keep on at, keep after, badger, hound, harry, harp on at, chivvy, trouble, bother, worry, torment, annoy, plague, bedevil, persecute
    bug, give someone a hard time, get in someone's hair, get on someone's case, get on someone's back, breathe down someone's neck
    devil, ride
    harassed, stressed, stressed out, harried, frayed, hard-pressed, agitated, flustered, beleaguered, hounded, plagued, bothered, troubled, distressed, beset, hag-ridden, tormented
    under stress, under pressure, at the end of one's tether, with one's back up against the wall
    at the end of one's rope
    up against it, in a state, hot and bothered
    under the cosh, stressy
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Late 19th century (originally dialect in the sense hack or saw at): of unknown origin, perhaps a blend of haggle and tussle.