late 14c., "in a raw or unprepared state" (of coarse bread or untanned hide), from Latin crudus "rough; not cooked, raw, bloody," from PIE *krue-do-, from PIE root *kreue- "raw flesh." Meaning "lacking grace, socially unrefined" is attested by 1640s. Related: Crudely; crudeness. Crude oil, which is in its natural state and unrefined, is from 1865.
updated on May 20, 2018