rough and tumble


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rough and tumble

Rowdy, disorderly, and boisterous; marked by scuffles or infighting. An allusion to a boxing match in which there are no rules. Sometimes hyphenated when used before a noun. The kids started getting a bit too rough and tumble when their cousin Jake came over. It's healthy for them to have a bit of rough-and-tumble play, so long as they make time for quiet play, as well.
See also: and, rough, tumble

the rough and tumble of (something)

The disorder, aggressive infighting, arguing, or competitiveness of something. An allusion to a boxing match in which there are no rules. I just wanted to make a difference to the people who lived in my community. I wasn't prepared for the rough and tumble of local politics.
See also: and, of, rough, tumble

rough-and-tumble

 and rough-and-ready
disorderly; aggressive. That was a rough-and-tumble football game. George is too rough-and-ready for me. He doesn't know how to act around civilized people.

rough and tumble

Disorderly scuffling or infighting, as in She had some reservations about entering the rough and tumble of local politics. This expression originated in the late 1700s in boxing, where it referred to a fight without rules. [Mid-1800s]
See also: and, rough, tumble

rough and tumble

COMMON You use rough and tumble to mean a situation in which there is a lot of arguing or competition and people do not worry about upsetting or harming others. Whoever expected leaders in the rough and tumble of electoral politics to be nice or fair? Note: You can use rough-and-tumble before a noun. He started his political career in the rough-and-tumble world of student politics. Note: You usually use this expression when you think that this is normal or acceptable behaviour. Note: Originally, a rough and tumble was a boxing match in which there were no rules or restrictions.
See also: and, rough, tumble

rough and tumble

a situation without rules or organization; a free-for-all.
The expression originated in 19th-century boxing slang.
See also: and, rough, tumble

rough and ˈtumble


1 a situation in which people compete with each other and are aggressive in order to get what they want: In the rough and tumble of politics you can’t trust anyone.
2 a noisy but not serious fight: The toddlers often join in the rough and tumble of the older children’s games.
See also: and, rough, tumble

rough and tumble

mod. disorderly; aggressive. George is too rough and tumble for me. He doesn’t know how to act around civilized people.
See also: and, rough, tumble

rough and tumble

Violent and disorderly action; a fight without rules. This early nineteenth-century Americanism may have originated in boxing—at least it was so defined by John Bartlett in 1859, although his work antedated the Queensberry rules of the ring by some years, and most boxing was of the rough-and-tumble variety. Nevertheless, the term was generally applied only to physical fights of various kinds until the second half of the century, when it began to be used more figuratively. Oliver Wendell Holmes (The Poet at the Breakfast-Table, 1872) wrote “That circle of rough-and-tumble political life.”
See also: and, rough, tumble
References in periodicals archive ?
RELATED ARTICLE: Rough and tumble show is a steaming success.
But they are still wild animals and it's important that they are allowed to play rough and tumble.
Cooking outdoors between storms or on the stove of his caravan, it's rough and tumble cuisine.
Hamilton said: "My dad was born and brought up in the rough and tumble of the centre of Glasgow and I reckon I'm ready for the rough and tumble of international rugby.
MOST men would kill for a bit of rough and tumble with Angelina Jolie.
Five years ago, he played the city's King Tut's, looking more rough and tumble, with a sound to match.
THESE games are always rough and tumble affairs and the memories of last year's Croker choker will surely inspire Dublin most.