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  1. work·ing
  2. adjective

    • 1. having paid employment:

      the size of the working population
      Synonym : employed, in work, in a job, waged, in gainful employment
    • 2. engaged in manual labor:

      the vote is no longer sufficient protection for the working man
    • 3. relating to, suitable for, or for the purpose of work:

      improvements in living and working conditions
    • 4. (of an animal) used in farming, hunting, or for guard duties; not kept as a pet or for show.

    • 5. functioning or able to function:

      the mill still has a working waterwheel
      Synonym : functioning, operating, going, running, active, in working order, operational, functional, able to function, usable, serviceable, up and running
    • 6. (of parts of a machine) moving and causing a machine to operate:

      the working parts of a digital watch
    • 7. (of a theory, definition, or title) used as the basis for work or argument and likely to be developed, adapted, or improved later:

      the working hypothesis is tested and refined through discussion
    • 8. (of something possessed) sufficient to work with:

      they have a working knowledge of contract law
      Synonym : sufficient, adequate, good enough, viable, useful, effective


    • 1. the action of doing work.

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

      we will be less secretive about the workings of government
      Synonym : functioning, operation, running, action, performance, mechanism, machinery, working/moving parts, movement, action, works, innards, insides
    • 3. a mine or a part of a mine from which minerals are being extracted.

  3. Variation

    • n.: noun: working, plural noun: workings