Definition of riff-raff noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



BrE BrE//ˈrɪf ræf//
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrɪf ræf//
[uncountable + singular or plural verb] (disapproving)
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an insulting way of referring to people of low social class or people who are not considered socially acceptable We don’t want to let all the riff-raff in. More Like This Reduplicative words airy-fairy, argy-bargy, chit-chat, criss-cross, dilly-dally, harum-scarum, helter-skelter, higgledy-piggledy, hocus-pocus, hoity-toity, hotchpotch, hurly-burly, itty-bitty, mumbo jumbo, mishmash, nitty-gritty, ping-pong, pitter-patter, shilly-shally, teeny-weeny, tittle-tattle, touchy-feely, wishy-washySee worksheet. Word Originlate 15th cent. (as riff and raff): from Old French rif et raf ‘one and all, every bit’, of Germanic origin.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: riff-raff