- a base, dishonest, or unscrupulous person.
- a mischievous person or animal: That child is a real rascal.
- a disreputable person; villain
- a mischievous or impish rogue
- an affectionate or mildly reproving term for a child or old manyou little rascal; the wicked old rascal kissed her
- obsolete a person of lowly birth
- (prenominal) obsolete
- belonging to the mob or rabble
- dishonest; knavish
mid-14c., rascaile “people of the lowest class, rabble of an army,” also singular, “low, tricky, dishonest person,” from Old French rascaille “rabble, mob” (12c., Modern French racaille, “the rascality or base and rascall sort, the scumme, dregs, offals, outcasts, of any company” [Cotgrave, French-English Dictionary, 1611]), perhaps a diminutive from Old French rascler, from Vulgar Latin *rasicare “to scrape” (see rash (n.)). Used also in Middle English of animals not hunted as game.