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Definition of "roughneck" [roughneck]

  • An uncouth person. (noun)
  • A rowdy. (noun)
  • A member of the crew of an oil rig other than the driller. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "roughneck" in a sentence
  • "The name roughneck, which crews tend to embrace as a badge of honor, reflects the demanding and sometimes risky work that sustains them, and the cowboy mystique they bring from their hometowns in the South and West."
  • "In the first three or four he was pretty crude; he was even defined as a roughneck somewhere."
  • "Mr. Cornett has already taken a demotion from a driller to a "roughneck" oilfield slang for a floorman at a much lower salary to maintain a steady paycheck."