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  1. work
    IPA[wərk]
  2. noun

    • 1. activity involving mental or physical effort done in order to achieve a purpose or result:

      he was tired after a day's work in the fields
      Synonym : labor, toil, exertion, effort, slog, drudgery, the sweat of one's brow, industry, service, grind, sweat, donkey work, spadework, elbow grease, graft, fag, yakka, travail, moil
    • 2. mental or physical activity as a means of earning income; employment:

      I'm still looking for work
    • 3. the place where one is employed:

      I was returning home from work on a packed subway
    • 4. the period of time one spends in paid employment:

      he was going to the theater after work
    • 5. a task or tasks to be undertaken; something a person or thing has to do:

      they made sure the work was progressing smoothly
      Synonym : tasks, jobs, duties, assignments, commissions, projects, chores
    • 6. the materials for a task:

      she frequently took work home with her
    • 7. cosmetic plastic surgery:

      between you and me, I think he's had some work done
    • 8. good or moral deeds:

      the Clapham sect was concerned with works rather than with faith
    • 9. something done or made:

      her work hangs in all the main American collections
    • 10. the result of the action of a specified person or thing:

      the bombing had been the work of a German-based cell
    • 11. a literary or musical composition or other piece of fine art:

      a work of fiction
    • 12. all literary or musical pieces by a particular author, composer, or artist, regarded collectively:

      the works of Schubert fill several feet of shelf space
      Synonym : writings, oeuvre, canon, output
    • 13. a piece of embroidery, sewing, or knitting, typically made using a specified stitch or method.

    • 14. an architectural or engineering structure such as a bridge or dam.

    • 15. the record of the successive calculations made in solving a mathematical problem:

      show your work on a separate sheet of paper
    • 16. a place or premises for industrial activity, typically manufacturing:

      he found a job in the ironworks
      Synonym : factory, plant, manufacturing complex, mill, foundry, yard, industrial unit, business unit, workshop, shop
    • 17. the operative part of a clock or other machine:

      she could almost hear the tick of its works
      Synonym : mechanism, machinery, workings, working parts, parts, movement, action, innards, insides
    • 18. a defensive structure.

    • 19. the exertion of force overcoming resistance or producing molecular change.

    • 20. everything needed, desired, or expected:

      the heavens put on a show: sheet lightning, hailstones—the works
      Synonym : everything, the full treatment, everything but the kitchen sink, the lot, the whole shooting match, the whole (kit and) caboodle, the whole shebang, the whole nine yards, the full monty, the whole ball of wax

    verb

    • 1. be engaged in physical or mental activity in order to achieve a purpose or result, especially in one's job; do work:

      an engineer who had been working on a design for a more efficient wing new contracts forcing employees to work longer hours
      Synonym : toil, labor, exert oneself, slave (away), plod away, work one's fingers to the bone, work like a Trojan/dog, work day and night, keep at it, keep one's nose to the grindstone, slog (away), beaver away, plug away, peg away, put one's back into something, work one's guts out, work one's socks off, knock oneself out, sweat blood, kill oneself, graft, fag, bullock, work one's balls/arse off, work one's ass/butt off, drudge, travail, moil
    • 2. be employed in a specified occupation or field:

      Taylor has worked in education for 17 years
      Synonym : be employed, have a job, earn one's living, hold down a job, do business, follow/ply one's trade
    • 3. set to or keep at work:

      Jane is working you too hard
    • 4. solve (a puzzle or mathematical problem):

      she spent her days working crosswords
    • 5. practice one's occupation or operate in or at (a particular place):

      I worked a few clubs and so forth
    • 6. (of a machine or system) operate or function, especially properly or effectively:

      his cell phone doesn't work unless he goes to a high point
      Synonym : function, go, run, operate, perform, be in working order, behave
    • 7. (of a machine or a part of it) run; go through regular motions:

      it's designed to go into a special “rest” state when it's not working
    • 8. cause (a device or machine) to operate:

      teaching customers how to work a PC
    • 9. (of a plan or method) have the desired result or effect:

      the desperate ploy had worked
      Synonym : succeed, be successful, work out, turn out well, go as planned, have the desired result, get results, be effective, take effect, be efficacious, come off, pay off, do the trick, do the business, turn the trick
    • 10. bring about; produce as a result:

      with a dash of blusher here and there, you can work miracles
      Synonym : bring about, accomplish, achieve, produce, do, perform, carry out, implement, execute, create, engender, contrive, effect
    • 11. make efforts to achieve something; campaign:

      they are dedicated to working for a better future for the generations to come
    • 12. arrange or contrive:

      the chairman was prepared to work it for Phillip if he was interested
    • 13. exert influence or use one's persuasive power on (someone or their feelings):

      she worked upon the sympathy of her associates
    • 14. use one's persuasive power to stir the emotions of (a person or group of people):

      the born politician's art of working a crowd
      Synonym : stir (up), excite, drive, move, spur, rouse, fire, galvanize, whip up, inflame, incite, agitate
    • 15. bring (a material or mixture) to a desired shape or consistency by hammering, kneading, or some other method:

      work the mixture into a paste with your hands
    • 16. (of an artist) produce articles or pictures using (a particular material or medium):

      he works in clay over a very strong frame
    • 17. produce (an article or design) using a specified material or sewing stitch:

      the castle itself is worked in tent stitch
    • 18. cultivate (land) or extract materials from (a mine or quarry):

      contracts and leases to work the mines
    • 19. move or cause to move gradually or with difficulty into another position, typically by means of constant movement or pressure:

      comb from tip to root, working out the knots at the end its bases were already working loose
    • 20. (of a person's features) move violently or convulsively:

      hair wild, mouth working furiously
      Synonym : twitch, quiver, twist, move spasmodically, convulse
    • 21. (of joints, such as those in a wooden ship) loosen and flex under repeated stress.

    • 22. make progress to windward, with repeated tacking:

      trying to work to windward in light airs
    • 23. bring into a specified state, especially an emotional state:

      Harold had worked himself into a minor rage
      Synonym : stir (up), excite, drive, move, spur, rouse, fire, galvanize, whip up, inflame, incite, agitate
  3. Variation

    • n.: noun: work, plural noun: works

    • v.: verb: work, 3rd person present: works, gerund or present participle: working, past tense: worked, past participle: worked

    • combining form

      denoting things or parts made of a specified material or with specified tools:

      denoting a mechanism or structure of a specified kind:

    • noun

      activity involving mental or physical effort done in order to achieve a purpose or result:

      mental or physical activity as a means of earning income; employment:

    • verb

      be engaged in physical or mental activity in order to achieve a result; do work:

      be employed in a specified occupation or field:

    • combining form

      denoting things or parts made of a specified material or with specified tools:

      denoting a mechanism or structure of a specified kind:

    • adjective

      having paid employment:

      engaged in manual labor:

    • noun

      the action of doing work.

      the way in which a machine, organization, or system operates:

    • adjective

      having paid employment:

      engaged in manual labour:

    • noun

      the action of doing work:

      a scheduled duty or trip performed by a locomotive, train, bus, or other vehicle:

    • (of an equation) be capable of being solved

      be calculated at

    • verb

      shape (metal) while it is cold:
    • noun

      the shaping of metal while it is cold.
    • noun

      work done by a group of people in collaboration:

      education, training, or therapy given in a group:

    • adjective

      denoting an activity that serves mainly to keep someone busy and is of little value in itself:
    • noun

      work or activity of little value that serves to keep someone busy:
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