Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

slave

play
noun \ˈslāv\

Simple Definition of slave

  • : someone who is legally owned by another person and is forced to work for that person without pay

  • : a person who is strongly influenced and controlled by something

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of slave

  1. 1 :  a person held in servitude as the chattel of another

  2. 2 :  one that is completely subservient to a dominating influence

  3. 3 :  a device (as the printer of a computer) that is directly responsive to another

  4. 4 :  drudge, toiler

slave

adjective

Examples of slave in a sentence

  1. He treats her like a slave.

  2. Do it yourself! I'm not your slave!



Origin and Etymology of slave

Middle English sclave, from Anglo-French or Medieval Latin; Anglo-French esclave, from Medieval Latin sclavus, from Sclavus Slavic; from the frequent enslavement of Slavs in central Europe during the early Middle Ages


First Known Use: 14th century


2

slave

verb

Simple Definition of slave

  • : to work very hard

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of slave

slaved

slaving

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 archaic :  enslave

  3. 2 :  to make directly responsive to another mechanism

  4. intransitive verb
  5. 1 :  to work like a slave :  drudge

  6. 2 :  to traffic in slaves


Slave

play
geographical name \ˈslāv\

Definition of Slave

  1. river 258 miles (415 kilometers) Canada flowing from W end of Lake Athabasca N into Great Slave Lake





SLAVE Defined for Kids

1

slave

play
noun \ˈslāv\

Definition of slave for Students

  1. 1 :  a person who is owned by another person and can be sold at the owner's will

  2. 2 :  a person who is strongly influenced and controlled by something <a slave to fashion>

  3. 3 :  drudge




2

slave

play
verb

Definition of slave for Students

slaved

slaving

  1. :  to work very hard, for long hours, or under difficult conditions <… I could only see myself slaving … in the tobacco fields. — Robert Louis Stevenson, Kidnapped>





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up slave? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a jerking and twitching of the body

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

two-chairs-on-a-pier-by-the-ocean-in-summer

Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?

estival hiemal brumal vernal
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ