An adjective is a word that describes a noun (e.g. the big dog).
1. (difficult)
a. duro
I know it's tough, having to start all over again.Sé que es duro, tener que volver a empezar desde cero.
b. difícil
These are tough times for self-employed professionals.Son tiempos difíciles para los profesionales autónomos.
2. (physically and emotionally strong)
a. fuerte
She's a tough lady. She won't let this discourage her.Es una mujer fuerte. No se dejará desanimar por esto.
3. (strict)
a. duro
The city council has decided to get tough with street gangs.El ayuntamiento ha decidido ponerse duro con las pandillas callejeras.
4. (prone to violence)
a. duro (person)
He thinks he's tough but he's terrified of spiders.Se cree un tipo duro pero les tiene terror a las arañas.
b. peligroso (neighborhood)
That's a tough part of town. I wouldn't live there.Es un barrio peligroso. Yo no viviría allí.
5. (hard-wearing)
a. resistente
You need something tougher than flip-flops for hiking.Necesitas algo más resistente que unas chancletas para ir de caminata.
6. (chewy)
a. duro
The lamb was tough and flavorless.El cordero estaba duro y soso.
A noun is a word referring to a person, animal, place, thing, feeling or idea (e.g. man, dog, house).
7. (ruffian)
a. el matón
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
There was a gang of toughs outside the store, so I waited until they were gone.Había una pandilla de matones en la puerta de la tienda, así que esperé hasta que se marcharan.
An adverb is a word that describes a verb, an adjective, or other adverbs (e.g. to run quickly, very tired).
8. (aggressively)
a. duro
You don't have to be a big strong man to act tough.No hace falta ser grandote y fuerte para hacerse el duro.
An interjection is a short utterance that expresses emotion, hesitation, or protest (e.g. Wow!).
9. (too bad)
a. mala suerte
That's not the one I wanted. - Tough!Ese no es el que quería. - ¡Mala suerte!
b. de malas
I don't want to eat this. - Tough! It's the only thing we have.No quiero comer esto. - ¡De malas! Es lo único que tenemos.
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A noun is a word referring to a person, animal, place, thing, feeling or idea (e.g. man, dog, house).
1. (general)
a. el matón
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
An adjective is a word that describes a noun (e.g. the big dog).
2. (material, person)
a. resistente, fuerte
3. (meat, rule, policy)
a. duro(a)
4. (colloquial)
a tough guyun tipo duro
to get tough (with somebody)ponerse duro(a; con alguien)
5. (difficult)
a. difícil
6. (unfair)
a. injusto(a)
7. (colloquial)
tough luck!¡mala suerte!
An adverb is a word that describes a verb, an adjective, or other adverbs (e.g. to run quickly, very tired).
8. (general)
to act toughhacerse el/la duro(a)
tough [tʌf]
tougher (comparative)toughest (superlative)
1 (robust) fuerte
granny may be old, but she's tough puede que la abuela sea vieja, pero es fuerte
It was a spartan upbringing but it made us pretty tough he wasn't mentally tough enough
to be (as) tough as old boots [+person] ser fuerte como un roble (informal)
Mr Major praised his friend as the right man to deal with the Chinese as they prepare to take back Hong Kong in five years' time. "He's as tough as old boots," he promised Being a gardener means being as strong as an ox and as tough as old boots We set off for the city, in a bus loaded with genial, moustached /Turkish labourers, all as tough as old boots/ piece of meat this steak is as tough as old boots
2 (hard, uncompromising) [+person] duro; [+neighbourhood, school] peligroso
...a tough neighbourhood Arthur grew up in a tough city ...tough comprehensive schools. He looked what he really was: a tough and ruthless mercenary We have to keep tough law-breaking youngsters off the streets. a tough and ambitious businessman He built up a reputation as a tough businessman I can be tough when I have to be He's not hard-hearted but resolute and tough...
tough customer tíoatía (m) (f) duroadura (informal);a tía a dura
She's a tough customer, but you have to admire her He was a bit of a hell-raiser in his youth, a debaucher, a brawler, a street fighter and a troublemaker. Anyway, they are all very tough customers
tough guy tipo (m) duro
These are real tough guys, who helped run the Tonton Macoutes He had shot three people dead earning himself a reputation as a tough guy
tough nut tíoatía (m) (f) duroadura (informal);a tía a dura
to do some tough talking hablar sin rodeos
There clearly needs to be some tough talking done in the interests of getting the project finished It took tough talking to get Mr Hoyte to agree to the deal
3 (resistant) [+substance, material] fuerte; resistente
Butyl is very tough and durable Some plastics are as tough as [metal]...
[+skin] duro
he cut through the tough, orange-yellow [skin] of the mango. ...dark brown beans with a rather tough outer skin The documents will survive beautifully because they're written on parchment, tough animal skin
4 (not tender) [+meat] duro
the steak was as tough as old boots el filete estaba duro como la suela de un zapato (informal)
the steak was tough and the peas were like bullets The [meat] was smelly and a little tough... Rattlesnake is just like chicken, only tougher.
5 (harsh) [+policies] duro; de mano dura
Many people are convinced that her tough economic [policies] will succeed... ...a very tough form of law and order.
[+measures] duro; [+teacher, parent] severo
Mr Yeltsin announced tough measures to limit the money supply ...a judge with a reputation for tough sentencing
to take a tough line on sth adoptar una línea dura con respecto a algo
He is known for taking a tough line on security
to take a tough line with sb ponerse duro con algn
The Soviet Prime Minister took a tough line with the Lithuanians
to be tough on sb ser duro con algn
Our aim is to be tough on the guerrillas Some have criticized me for being too tough on the medical profession ...the bankers who are so tough on small businessmen It's been tough on everyone, including my family, who've had to put up with my bad moods
6 (difficult) [+way of life, situation, day] duro; difícil
It was a tough life. Whoever wins the election is going to have a tough job getting the economy back on its feet It will certainly be tough for them at first It's been a tough day It was to be one of the toughest by-elections for a long time...
[+choice, question] difícil
These are the tough choices that Clinton has to make I am making some very difficult, tough decisions and I'm not worrying about the political repercussions It was a very tough decision but we feel we made the right one for George The President may get asked a few tough questions about US policy
[+competition] fuerte
Both manufacturers still face tough competition for the order she had a pretty tough childhood
it's a tough job being Prime Minister es duro ser primer ministro; it's a tough job, but somebody has to do it es un trabajo duro, pero alguien tiene que hacerlo; it's tough when you have kids es difícil cuando tienes niños; it will be tough to finish it in time va a ser difícil acabarlo a tiempo
Costello admits it's going to be tough to get airplay for his new recording It was tough to get a cab... It may be tough to raise cash when needed
his team will be tough to beat su equipo será difícil de vencer; va a ser difícil vencer a su equipo
The pace of change is often tough to deal with
it was tough trying to raise the cash fue difícil conseguir el dinero
It must have been tough being a child in the war Once you get used to working for yourself, it's tough working for anybody else It'll be tough getting Congress to approve these measures
he has found it tough going this year este año se le ha hecho muy cuesta arriba; este año le ha resultado muy difícil
I found it tough going at first here
when the going gets tough cuando las cosas se ponen difíciles
She turns to him for advice and help when the going is tough The self-employed will find the going especially tough when it comes to getting a mortgage They were in the semi-finals last season but fell away when the going got tough
to have a tough time (of it) pasarlo mal or fatal (informal); pasar las de Caín (informal)
Jeanneau has had a tough time of it these last few years He was having a really tough time at work The people who protest to me are having a genuinely tough time. Many of them have second-mortgaged their homes Everyone warned me that I was in for a tough time
when the going gets tough, the tough get going la gente con arrestos se crece ante las adversidades
7 (set expressions)
tough!tough luck! ¡mala suerte!
If you can't get here in time, that's your tough luck.
that's your tough luck! ¡te fastidias!
tough shit te jodes (vulgar)
You got a problem with this? Tough shit Tough shit. I got here first
(thug) matón (m); macarra (informal) (m)
They're a couple of young toughs. Three burly toughs elbowed their way to the front
transitive verb
to tough it out aguantar el tipo (informal)
It was hard, he said, but he would get through it, tough it out. I think it was very brave of him to tough it out
to act/talk tough hacerse el duro (informal)
the Tories hope to boost their popularity by talking tough President Bush has put President Gorbachev under pressure by talking tough on the need for reform Congress needs to act tough to reduce the deficit ...trying to act tough around your friends
2 (US)
to hang tough mantenerse firme
We hope the President hangs tough on this one The White House is hanging tough for a good agreement Both sides have their reasons for hanging tough at the moment and for not conceding very much
Collins Complete Spanish Electronic Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers 2011
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