adjective: Extremely difficult, unpleasant, or filthy.
After King Augeas in Greek mythology. Augeas had a herd of 3000 oxen, but he neglected to clean his stables for thirty years. Hercules was asked to clean them up, and he diverted two rivers to wash away the decades of accumulated compost. Earliest documented use: 1599.
“Rajiv Gandhi gave an impression that he would clean the Augean stables that the Congress had come to represent.”
Game-Changer That Wasn’t; The Pioneer (New Delhi, India); Sep 19, 2011.
Explore “Augean” in the Visual Thesaurus.