Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Boisterous; rowdy.
  • adj. Appropriate for rough wear or use: a knockabout overcoat.
  • n. A small sloop with a mainsail, jib, and keel but no bowsprit.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Boisterous
  • adj. Suitable for rough use.
  • n. A small sailboat lacking a bowsprit, of a type found primarily in the Massachusetts area
  • n. A slapstick comedy or comedian.
  • n. A tumbler.
  • n. Clothing suitable for rough use.
  • n. Workers habitually engaged in casual employment.
  • n. People living in rough, violent conditions.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Marked by knocking about or roughness.
  • adj. Of noisy and violent character; marked by farce, pratfalls, and horseplay.
  • adj. Characterized by, or suitable for, knocking about, or traveling or wandering hither and thither; suitable for use in rough activity; suited for everyday use; -- used especially of clothing.
  • adj. That does odd jobs; -- said of a class of hands or laborers on a sheep station.
  • n. A small yacht, generally from fifteen to twenty-five feet in length, having a mainsail and a jib; a sloop with a simplified rig and no bowsprit. All knockabouts have ballast and either a keel or centerboard. The original type was twenty-one feet in length. The next larger type is called a raceabout.
  • n. A knockabout performer or performance.
  • n. A man hired on a sheep station to do odd jobs.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Noting something which knocks (other things) about; rough; buffeting; boisterous: as, a knockabout game of foot-ball.
  • Accustomed to knock about or to be knocked about: as, a knockabout globe-trotter; suitable to be knocked about in: as, a knockabout coat.
  • Noisy; full of horse-play: as, a knockabout entertainment; knockabout business.
  • In Australia, applied to a jack of all trades on a station.
  • n. A traveler; one who has knocked about.
  • n. A performer in a knockabout playorsketch;the sketch itself.
  • n. In Australia, a hand on a station who does a little of everything.
  • n. A small sailing-yacht of light construction and simple sail rig, the latter consisting of a mainsail and a jib bent on a stay that is set up on the stem of the boat. These boats, as a rule, are flat-bottomed, with a fin-keel, and can be handled very quickly, going from one tack to another without apparently losing speed. Some knockabouts are provided with a center-board instead of a fin, for use in shallow waters.
  • n. A small launch.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. full of rough and exuberant animal spirits
  • n. a sloop with a simplified rig and no bowsprit
  • adj. suitable for rough use
  • v. be around; be alive or active
  • v. strike against forcefully

Etymologies

knock +‎ about (Wiktionary)

Examples

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