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raffish

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adjective raff·ish \ˈra-fish\

Simple Definition of raffish

  • : not completely acceptable or respectable but interesting and attractive

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of raffish

  1. 1 :  marked by or suggestive of flashy vulgarity or crudeness

  2. 2 :  marked by a careless unconventionality :  rakish

raffishly

adverb

raffishness

noun

Examples of raffish in a sentence

  1. <the dowager cringed at the thought of raffish tourists in rough boots tromping all over her Persian rugs>



Did You Know?

Raffish sounds like it should mean "resembling raff." But what is raff? Originally, "raff" was a word meaning "rubbish"; it derived from Middle English "raf," and it was being used for trash and refuse back in the 1400s. Around a century later, English speakers were also using the word riffraff to mean "disreputable characters" or "rabble." The origins of "riffraff" are distinct from the "rubbish" sense of "raff"; "riffraff" derived from an Anglo-French phrase meaning "one and all." By the mid-1500s, the similarities between "raff" and "riffraff" had prompted people to start using the two words as synonyms, and "raff" gained a "rabble" sense. It was that ragtag "raff" that gave rise to the adjective "raffish" in the late 1700s.

1796

First Known Use of raffish

1796



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