as·​sem·​bly-line | \ ə-ˈsem-blē-ˌlīn How to pronounce assembly-line (audio) \

Definition of assembly-line

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: made by or as if by an assembly line especially : lacking originality or creativity bored by the novel's assembly-line plot

assembly line


Definition of assembly line (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an arrangement of machines, equipment, and workers in which work passes from operation to operation in direct line until the product is assembled
2 : a process for turning out a finished product in a mechanically efficient manner academic assembly lines

Examples of assembly-line in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun On this expedition, Ms. Soto assumed other jobs on the assembly line: cutting samples of pectoral muscle to drop into liquid nitrogen, calling out colors of beaks and feathers, gingerly tagging a leg. Federico Rios, New York Times, 31 Aug. 2021 The son of a foundry worker, Kariem worked on the assembly line at age 20. Phoebe Wall Howard, Detroit Free Press, 25 May 2021 Supplies for Red Line cars went missing for weeks; parts were mistakenly sent off-site; materials to finish seats were late to arrive; unfinished Orange Line cars stalled on the assembly line., 25 Oct. 2020 New cases along the assembly line threaten to impact U.S. vehicle production and, in turn, Detroit’s Big Three automakers have reinstated mask mandates for hourly workers, hoping to contain the spread of the virus variant. Paul A. Eisenstein, NBC News, 3 Aug. 2021 In the largest criminal case so far, nine people in Florida and Ohio are accused of paying kickbacks to recruit participants in what was essentially an assembly line for fraud. Stacy Cowley, New York Times, 28 Aug. 2020 The car dealership industry is as old as the assembly line technology that allows mass production of cars. Dallas News, 13 Aug. 2021 China’s sports assembly line is designed for one purpose: churning out gold medals for the glory of the nation. New York Times, 29 July 2021 Chandler has been known for producing future NFL draft picks and for its assembly line of quarterbacks and running backs. Richard Obert, The Arizona Republic, 27 July 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'assembly-line.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of assembly-line


1925, in the meaning defined above


1914, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for assembly-line

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The first known use of assembly-line was in 1914

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Dictionary Entries Near assembly-line

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Cite this Entry

“Assembly-line.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for assembly-line

assembly line


English Language Learners Definition of assembly line

assembly line


Kids Definition of assembly line

: an arrangement for assembling a product mechanically in which work passes from one operation to the next in a direct line until the product is finished

More from Merriam-Webster on assembly-line

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for assembly-line


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