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    #1

    36 different meanings of the adjective "rough"

    Dear teachers,

    Would you be kind enough to help me to make the correct intepretation of the adjective in bold in the following sentence to my native language? (Certainly if it’s not too much trouble.)

    I’m a rough boy, I’m a rough boy.

    I know least four very different main meanings of the adjective in question:

    rough = boisterous, unruly, uncouth, or rowdy

    but there are many more synonyms:

    bristly, bumpy, coarse, craggy, disshevelled (sloppy), irregular, jagged, rugged, uneven, austere, blunt, brusque, cruel, curt, drastic, extreme, hard, harsh, severe, sharp, tough, agitated, choppy, stormy, tempestuous,violent, wild, sick, unwell, blatant, vociferous.

    In my opinion the work is getting more complicated at that.

    Thank you for your efforts.

    Regards,

    V.
    Last edited by vil; 17-Oct-2009 at 16:48.


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    #2

    Re: 36 different meanings of the adjective "rough"

    Quote Originally Posted by vil View Post
    Dear teachers,

    Would you be kind enough to help me to make the correct intepretation of the adjective in bold in the following sentence to my native language? (Certainly if itís not too much trouble.)

    Iím a rough boy, Iím a rough boy.

    I know least four very different main meanings of the adjective in question:

    rough = boisterous, unruly, uncouth, or rowdy

    Those four "very different meanings", Vil, can be highly subjective. As a native speaker, I think that the phrase 'rough boy' might ber a little dated.


    but there are many more synonyms:

    bristly, bumpy, coarse, craggy, disshevelled (sloppy), irregular, jagged, rugged, uneven, austere, blunt, brusque, cruel, curt, drastic, extreme, hard, harsh, severe, sharp, tough, agitated, choppy, stormy, tempestuous,violent, wild, sick, unwell, blatant, vociferous.

    In my opinion the work is getting more complicated at that.

    Thank you for your efforts.

    Regards,

    V.
    Being any of the above synonyms doesn't necessarily make a boy rough any more than it might make a woman or man rough.

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    #3

    Re: 36 different meanings of the adjective "rough"

    Possibly coarse/violent/wild as well

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    #4

    Re: 36 different meanings of the adjective "rough"

    Dear vil:

    Can you add more of the original text? And let us know if it's BrE, AmE, or???

    Thanks,

    Petra

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    #5

    Re: 36 different meanings of the adjective "rough"

    Hi Petra,

    Here are a few words concerning the matter in question. They will ring in my ears live at the time of the coming concert in my country.

    What in the worldís come all over me?
    I ainít got a chance of one in three.
    Ainít got no rap, ainít got no line
    But if youíll give me just a minute Iíll be feeling fine.

    I am the one who can fade the heat,
    The one they all say just canít be beat.
    Iíll shoot it to you straight and look you in the eye.
    So gimme just a minute and Iíll tell you why
    Iím a rough boy, Iím a rough boy.

    I donít care how you look at me
    Because Iím the one and you will see
    We can make it work, we can make it by.
    So give me one more minute and Iíll tell you why
    Iím a rough boy, Iím a rough boy.

    Thank you for your kindness.

    Regrds,

    V.

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    #6

    Re: 36 different meanings of the adjective "rough"

    Dear vil:

    I listened to this ZZ Top song, and no very specific meaning jumped out at me. A couple of possibilities:

    1) it's an expression whose meaning is understood by a particular group of people (of which I am not a member);
    or
    2) from the sound of it, it means, 'I'm a simple, unrefined young man.' The gentle, melancholy tone of the song combined with the lyrics implied (to me) that also, 'I am well-intentioned, trustworthy and a survivor.'

    Possibly also 'misunderstood by the more sophisticated world,' but here I'm really just streaming my consciousness...

    We must also consider that they merely liked the way it sounded.

    I hope this is helpful,

    Petra

    PS: Besides the dozens of synonyms for 'rough' that you found, there are many expressions containing the word. To cut up rough; roughing it; rough out; rough-hewn; a rough time, rough-and-tumble, etc. All have their own shades of 'unrefined', 'harsh', 'abrasive', or any of the meanings you suggested.

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