Online Encyclopedia

RUFFIAN (Fr. ruffian, It. ruffiano)

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V23, Page 819 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
Spread the word: del.icio.us del.icio.us it!
RUFFIAN (Fr. ruffian, It. ruffiano), a brutal, violent person, a swaggering, low bully. The etymology is obscure, but the word has been connected with " ruffier," a bully, swaggerer, one who "ruffles" (M. Du. roffeln, to pander). An early derivation, quoted in Du Cange, derives it from Lat. rufus, red, as the hair of the mereirices, with whom the ruffian were generally associated, was red or gold, as contrasted with the black hair of sober matrons.
End of Article: RUFFIAN (Fr. ruffian, It. ruffiano)
[back]
RUFF
[next]
FABRIZIO RUFFO (1744-1827)

Additional information and Comments

There are no comments yet for this article.
» Add information or comments to this article.
Please link directly to this article:
Highlight the code below, right click and select "copy." Paste it into a website, email, or other HTML document.