noun (1)
\ ˈjäb How to pronounce job (audio) \
plural jobs

Definition of job

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : a regular remunerative position got a part-time job as a waiter she quit her job
b : a specific duty, role, or function The heart's job is to circulate blood.
c(1) : something that has to be done : task was given the job of delivering the bad news
(2) : an undertaking requiring unusual exertion it was a real job to talk over that noise
2a : a piece of work doing odd jobs around the house Repairing the roof was a big job. especially : a small miscellaneous piece of work undertaken on order at a stated rate a car that needs a brake job
b : the object or material on which work is being done
c : something produced by or as if by work did a nice job
d : an example of a usually specified type : item the limousine was a long white job
3a : something done for private advantage the whole incident was a put-up job
b : a criminal enterprise specifically : robbery There comes a time in everyone's life when you need a lawyer. And I'm not implying that you're going to hold up a liquor store or pull a bank job anytime soon. — Stephen Fenech
c : a damaging or destructive bit of work did a job on him
4 chiefly British : state of affairs usually used with bad or good it was a good job you didn't hit the old man— E. L. Thomas
5 : plastic surgery for cosmetic purposes an eye job — see nose job
on the job
: at work : while working was injured on the job


jobbed; jobbing

Definition of job (Entry 2 of 4)

intransitive verb

1 : to do odd or occasional pieces of work for hire supported himself by jobbing in local orchestras
2 : to carry on public business for private gain
3 : to carry on the business of a middleman or wholesaler

transitive verb

1 : to buy and sell (something, such as stock) for profit : speculate
2 : to hire or let by the job or for a period of service job a carriage
3 : to get, deal with, or effect by jobbery
4 : to do or cause to be done by separate portions or lots : subcontract often used with out a publisher who knew the market might have jobbed out the work to factories in Asia— Michael Shnayerson
5 : to penalize or deprive unfairly … fans and players who may still believe that … they were jobbed out of a World Championship …— Roger Angell



Definition of job (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : of or relating to a job or to employment a guarantee of job security
2 : used in, engaged in, or done as job work a job shop
3 British : that is for hire for a given service or period a job gardener


noun (2)
\ ˈjōb How to pronounce Job (audio) \

Definition of Job (Entry 4 of 4)

1 : the hero of the book of Job who endures afflictions with fortitude and faith
2 : a narrative and poetic book of canonical Jewish and Christian Scripture — see Bible Table

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Choose the Right Synonym for job

Noun (1)

task, duty, job, chore, stint, assignment mean a piece of work to be done. task implies work imposed by a person in authority or an employer or by circumstance. charged with a variety of tasks duty implies an obligation to perform or responsibility for performance. the duties of a lifeguard job applies to a piece of work voluntarily performed; it may sometimes suggest difficulty or importance. the job of turning the company around chore implies a minor routine activity necessary for maintaining a household or farm. every child was assigned chores stint implies a carefully allotted or measured quantity of assigned work or service. a 2-month stint as a reporter assignment implies a definite limited task assigned by one in authority. a reporter's assignment

Examples of job in a Sentence

Noun (1) He took a job as a waiter. She has a high-paying job on Wall Street. She's trying to get a job in New York. The new factory will create thousands of jobs. They offered him the job but he turned it down. The blood's job is to carry oxygen to the different parts of the body. Construction of the bridge turned out to be a bigger job than they had expected. It's a dirty job, but someone has to do it.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Our job, as advisors, is to keep evolving toward the ideal. Tim Maurer, Forbes, 12 Sep. 2021 What everyone did not know was how Shanahan would handle his unusual QB situation once the real games started and his job and reputation were on the line. Scott Ostler, San Francisco Chronicle, 12 Sep. 2021 His job is to ensure four local hospitals can respond to hurricanes, floods, fires, pandemics, bombings — anything, in fact, that comes with chaos and mass casualties. Kate Santich,, 11 Sep. 2021 My first job was to assist in setting up a respite center for the workers digging through the debris. Eileen Murphy Donnersberger,, 10 Sep. 2021 Alarm bells rang periodically, signaling yet another evacuation of office buildings and reminding Hilda Solis that her job could be a risk to her life. Los Angeles Times, 9 Sep. 2021 Professors in Georgia and Pennsylvania have quit, saying the job isn’t worth risking their lives. WSJ, 9 Sep. 2021 My first job in New York was as an assistant to the illustrator James McMullan. Leanne Shapton, Curbed, 9 Sep. 2021 The job has never been tougher on the doctors and nurses. Miguel Marquez, CNN, 9 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Fundamentally, rush hour is the constraint around which many people have structured their lives: where to live, which job to take, what grocery store to use, when to eat family dinner. New York Times, 11 June 2021 Mack said in a release that Barnette earned the director of operations job through hard work and will be responsible for many administrative duties, including working with compliance and academic services. Shannon Russell, The Courier-Journal, 6 May 2021 The agreement also includes a social equity fund to divert some revenue to job placement and after-school programs, the sources said. Aaron Katersky, ABC News, 24 Mar. 2021 Rowe tugged on his gloves and started to job onto the pitch before the referees called him back, realizing a player couldn’t be substituted during a shootout. Julia Poe,, 24 Nov. 2020 It is sponsored by Workforce Solutions and will help job candidates from Stafford, Missouri City, Sugar Land, Rosenberg, Fulshear, Katy, Richmond and southwest Houston meet employers through virtual booths that are free for employers. Roy Kent, Houston Chronicle, 20 Sep. 2020 Plus, the penalties offset, which is a dumb rule that punishes no one. · Ravens blasting Browns Sunday just made the Bengals job a little harder Thursday night, assuming the Browns have any pride at all. Paul Daugherty, The Enquirer, 14 Sep. 2020 The wind industry is plagued by slowdowns in obtaining parts from overseas, getting them to job sites and constructing new turbines. Patrick Whittle, The Denver Post, 2 May 2020 And for the first time, lawmakers in Washington are talking seriously about responding with a government jobs program, along the lines of what President Franklin Roosevelt enacted in the 1930s. Giovanni Russonello, New York Times, 2 Apr. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The City Council has been taking numerous anti-job actions, driving out employment from the city. Star Tribune, 21 May 2021 That's where the Supreme Court's anti-job discrimination decision could play a critical role. Sy Mukherjee, Fortune, 15 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'job.' 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 job

Noun (1)

circa 1558, in the meaning defined at sense 2a


1681, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


1748, in the meaning defined at sense 3

Noun (2)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for job

Noun (1), Verb, and Adjective

perhaps from obsolete English job lump

Noun (2)

Latin, from Greek Iōb, from Hebrew Iyyōbh

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Time Traveler for job

Time Traveler

The first known use of job was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near job




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Statistics for job

Last Updated

14 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Job.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for job



English Language Learners Definition of job

: the work that a person does regularly in order to earn money
: a duty, task, or function that someone or something has
: something that requires very great effort


\ ˈjäb How to pronounce job (audio) \

Kids Definition of job

1 : work done regularly for pay My mom has a good job.
2 : a special duty or function It's my job to wash dishes.
3 : a piece of work usually done on order at an agreed rate Carpenters did the repair job.
4 : something produced by or as if by work I can do a better job.

Other Words from job

jobless \ -​ləs \ adjective


\ ˈjäb How to pronounce job (audio) \

Medical Definition of job

: plastic surgery for cosmetic purposes an eye job

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jobbed; jobbing

Legal Definition of job

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to do odd or occasional pieces of work for hire
2 : to carry on the business of a middleman or wholesaler

transitive verb

1 : to buy and sell (as stock) for profit
2 : to hire or let by the job or for a period of service
3 : to do or cause to be done by separate portions or lots : subcontract



Legal Definition of job (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a piece of work especially : a small miscellaneous piece of work undertaken on order at a stated rate
b : the object or material on which work is being done
2a : a specific duty, role, or function a job description
b : a regular remunerative position
on the job
: at work

More from Merriam-Webster on job

Nglish: Translation of job for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of job for Arabic Speakers


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