bugbear (plural bugbears)
- An ongoing problem; a recurring obstacle or adversity.
- A source of dread; resentment; or irritation. [from late 16th c.]
- Synonyms: pet peeve
- 1738, Alexander Pope, Epistle I of the First Book of Horace; to Lord Bolingbroke
- But, to the world no bugbear is so great
- As want of figure and a small estate.
- 1841, Dickens, The Old Curiosity Shop, chapter 3
- What have I done to be made a bugbear of, and to be shunned and dreaded as if I brought the plague?
- (archaic) An imaginary creature meant to inspire fear in children.
- Synonyms: goblin
bugbear (bugbears, present participle bugbearing; past and past participle bugbeared)