Etymology
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plug-ugly (n.)

"city ruffian, one of a gang who assaulted people and property in mid-19th century American cities," 1856, originally in Baltimore, from plug (n.), the American English slang name for the tall, silk stovepipe hats then popular among young men, + ugly. Sometimes as the name of a specific gang, but often generic.

updated on July 15, 2020

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Definitions of plug-ugly from WordNet

plug-ugly (n.)
someone who bullies weaker people;
Synonyms: tough guy
Etymologies are not definitions. From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.

Dictionary entries near plug-ugly

pluck

plucky

plug

plugger

plug-in

plug-ugly

plum

plumage

plumassier

plumb

plumbago