hard knocks


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Related to hard knocks: School of Hard Knocks

hard knocks

pl.n. Informal
The practical experiences of life, including hardships and disappointments: "He hadn't grown up in the school of hard knocks. Politically he had lived an easy life" (Thomas P. O'Neill, Jr.).

hard′ knocks′


n.pl.
Informal.
adversity or hardships.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.hard knocks - a state of misfortune or afflictionhard knocks - a state of misfortune or affliction; "debt-ridden farmers struggling with adversity"; "a life of hardship"
ill-being - lack of prosperity or happiness or health
bad luck, ill luck, tough luck, misfortune - an unfortunate state resulting from unfavorable outcomes
disaster, catastrophe - a state of extreme (usually irremediable) ruin and misfortune; "lack of funds has resulted in a catastrophe for our school system"; "his policies were a disaster"
extremity - an extreme condition or state (especially of adversity or disease)
distress - a state of adversity (danger or affliction or need); "a ship in distress"; "she was the classic maiden in distress"
affliction - a state of great suffering and distress due to adversity
victimization - adversity resulting from being made a victim; "his victimization infuriated him"
low-water mark, nadir - an extreme state of adversity; the lowest point of anything
References in classic literature ?
The first writers of the Arthur story had made a great deal of manly strength: it was often little more than a tale of hard knocks given and taken.
Vincent, Wolfe and Moore, Nelson and Wellington, they have carried their lives in their hands, getting hard knocks and hard work in plenty--which was on the whole what they looked for, and the best thing for them--and little praise or pudding, which indeed they, and most of us, are better without.
Wherever hard knocks of any kind, visible or invisible, are going; there the Brown who is nearest must shove in his carcass.
With these threats he clenched his hand again, and dexterously diving in betwen the elbows and catching the boy's head as it dodged from side to side, gave it three or four good hard knocks.
I'm a little brittle, you know, and can't stand many hard knocks.
He had known nothing but hard knocks for big stakes.
But don't you--none o' you--think as you own th' whole orange or you'll find out you're mistaken, an' you won't find it out without hard knocks.
As for the luckless idols, they received more hard knocks than supplications.
Now, a shiny black beaver is not an object exactly calculated to inspire tender or romantic sentiments, one would fancy, but that particular "stove pipe" seemed to touch Polly to the heart, for she caught it up, as if its fall suggested a greater one, smoothed out a slight dint, as if it was symbolical of the hard knocks its owner's head was now in danger of receiving, and stood looking at it with as much pity and respect, as if it had been the crown of a disinherited prince.
With these reflections, and a very hard knock on the crown of his unfortunate hat at each repetition of the last word, Newman Noggs, whose brain was a little muddled by so much of the contents of the pocket-pistol as had found their way there during his recent concealment, went forth to seek such consolation as might be derivable from the beef and greens of some cheap eating-house.
But what he also deserves recognition for is his brilliant work with the School of Hard Knocks programme that has become a hit on Sky Sports.
I'm from the school of hard knocks so I can handle it - I don't mind honesty as long as he's not mean, which he never, ever is," noted Winslet.