hustle

verb
hus·​tle | \ ˈhə-səl How to pronounce hustle (audio) \
hustled; hustling\ ˈhə-​s(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce hustle (audio) \

Definition of hustle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to crowd or push roughly : jostle, shove had been hustled into a jail cell with the other protesters
b : to convey forcibly or hurriedly … grabbed him by the arm and hustled him out the door …— John Dos Passos
c : to urge forward precipitately hustling tourists from one museum to the next
2a : to obtain by energetic activity usually used with up hustle up new customerstry to hustle up some tickets to tonight's gamehustling up some grub
b : to sell something to or obtain something from (someone) by energetic and especially underhanded activity : swindle hustling the suckers an elaborate scam to hustle the elderly
c : to sell or promote energetically and aggressively hustling a new product
d : to lure less skillful players into competing against oneself at (a gambling game) hustle pool

intransitive verb

1 : shove, press
2 : hasten, hurry you'd better hustle if you want to catch the bus
3a : to make strenuous efforts to obtain especially money or business Our quartet was out hustling … and we knew we stood good to take in a lot of change before the night was over.— Louis Armstrong
b : to obtain money by fraud or deception
c : to engage in prostitution
4 : to play a game or sport in an alert aggressive manner She's not the most talented player on the team, but she always hustles.

hustle

noun

Definition of hustle (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : energetic activity I … went about the hustle of summer life.— Stephen W. Kress You stepped out of Penn Station into the dizzying hustle of Eighth Avenue …— Colson Whitehead I enjoy the hustle and bustle of the city.
b chiefly US : effort and energy in playing a sport a baseball player who has been criticized for lack of hustle The fans admire them for their hustle. a player known more for his hustle than his talent
2 informal : a dishonest plan for getting money : scam Now, the secret of any hustle is that you have to have information that the other guy doesn't have.— Paul Newman … a once-inspired con man on his last hustle— Marilyn Stasio

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Examples of hustle in a Sentence

Verb The guards hustled the prisoners into the jail. The star's manager hustled him out the back door of the theater to avoid the throngs of fans. He's not the most talented player on the team, but he always hustles. He's been hustling drugs for a few years. They hustle diamonds, furs—whatever people are buying.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Maybe more then anything, Kerr had to hustle to sell a product that many were reluctant to buy at the time. Katrina Pham, chicagotribune.com, "Get to know 5 Bulls Hall of Famers not named Michael Jordan," 5 May 2021 There were three times in the Minnesota series when the Sox were shifted and a runner on second could have taken third if not for Bogaerts shouting at somebody to hustle up and cover the base. BostonGlobe.com, "Southern California has become baseball central," 17 Apr. 2021 At age 80 as of yesterday, the controversial Rose can still hustle. Jay Ginsbach, Forbes, "Pete Rose Turns Tout To Sell Sports Betting Picks," 15 Apr. 2021 That obviously created problems for patients who suddenly, at the end of the year, had to hustle to find new providers. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, "Column: Providence Health denies claim that it’s punishing a respected California hospital," 24 Feb. 2021 One of America's leading pig slaughterhouses is running faster than ever as meatpackers hustle to keep pork in grocery stores during the COVID-19 pandemic. Star Tribune, "As Oklahoma pork plant speeds up slaughtering, workers report more injuries," 19 Feb. 2021 Since then, voter outreach groups, like the New Georgia Project, Asian American Advocacy Fund and Mijente, have continued to hustle on the ground to mobilize young and minority voters. Los Angeles Times, "Essential Politics: How Georgia upended expectations," 6 Jan. 2021 Women of color, especially Black women and Latina women, have always had to hustle — and are bearing the brunt of job losses during Covid-19. New York Times, "The Working Woman’s Anthem ‘9 to 5’ Needed an Update. But This?," 7 Feb. 2021 But Padilla was there from the start as Newsom’s campaign chairman, often traveling with him to hustle for votes. George Skelton, Los Angeles Times, "Column: Alex Padilla’s Senate appointment marks a new chapter in California politics. It’s about time," 23 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hustle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of hustle

Verb

1720, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Noun

1897, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for hustle

Verb

Dutch husselen to shake, from Middle Dutch hutselen, frequentative of hutsen

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Statistics for hustle

Last Updated

11 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Hustle.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hustle. Accessed 15 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for hustle

hustle

verb

English Language Learners Definition of hustle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to quickly move or push (someone) often in a rough way
: to move or work in a quick and energetic way
: to play a sport with a lot of energy and effort

hustle

noun

English Language Learners Definition of hustle (Entry 2 of 2)

: energetic activity
chiefly US : effort and energy in playing a sport
informal : a dishonest plan for getting money

hustle

verb
hus·​tle | \ ˈhə-səl How to pronounce hustle (audio) \
hustled; hustling

Kids Definition of hustle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to push, crowd, or force forward roughly Officers hustled the prisoner to jail.
2 : to move or work rapidly and tirelessly They're hustling to get the job done. He hustled back to class.

hustle

noun

Kids Definition of hustle (Entry 2 of 2)

: energetic activity The hustle and bustle of the school day began.

Comments on hustle

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