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 (rŭf′ē-ən, rŭf′yən)
1. A tough or rowdy person.
2. A thug or gangster.

[French, pimp, from Old French rufien, from Old Provençal rufian, from Old Italian ruffiano.]

ruf′fi·an·ism n.
ruf′fi·an·ly adj.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.ruffianly - violent and lawlessruffianly - violent and lawless; "the more ruffianly element"; "tough street gangs"
violent - acting with or marked by or resulting from great force or energy or emotional intensity; "a violent attack"; "a violent person"; "violent feelings"; "a violent rage"; "felt a violent dislike"


[ˈrʌfɪənlɪ] ADJbrutal
References in classic literature ?
He had shown himself wild, dissipated, addicted to low pleasures, little short of ruffianly in his propensities, and recklessly expensive, with no other resources than the bounty of his uncle.
Joseph mumbled indistinctly in the depths of the cellar, but gave no intimation of ascending; so his master dived down to him, leaving me VIS-A-VIS the ruffianly bitch and a pair of grim shaggy sheep-dogs, who shared with her a jealous guardianship over all my movements.
There will be a siring of carts and mules on a certain part of the coast, and a most ruffianly lot of men, men you understand, men with wives and children and sweethearts, who from the very moment they start on a trip risk a bullet in the head at any moment, but who have a perfect conviction that I will never fail them.
I had pictured him as a more robust and ruffianly person.