la·​bor·​er | \ ˈlā-bər-ər How to pronounce laborer (audio) \

Definition of laborer

: one that labors specifically : a person who does unskilled physical work for wages

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Examples of laborer in a Sentence

He has been working as a laborer on a construction project. having no real skills, the men could only find work as laborers unloading cargo ships
Recent Examples on the Web Hamvas, who was banned from publishing during the Communist regime and subsequently had to work as a laborer at remote power plants, died in 1968. Adam Leith Gollner, The New Yorker, "Does Your Wine Really Taste Like Rocks?," 3 May 2021 To make ends meet, Fern hits the road as a 21st century migrant laborer, working at an Amazon warehouse, harvesting beets and tending to campground bathrooms. Los Angeles Times, "Architecture of the unsettled: Oscars’ best picture nominees reveal an America in transition," 21 Apr. 2021 My grandfather worked as a laborer during his upbringing in Mississippi. Cedrick Frazier, Star Tribune, "We must outlaw white supremacy in law enforcement," 8 Apr. 2021 The family of Imtiaz Jalbani, a laborer, has suffered as much as any from this outbreak. New York Times, "The City Losing Its Children to H.I.V.," 31 Mar. 2021 According to the great American folk ballad, the railroad laborer was working in West Virginia in the early 1870s when his company bought a steam drill. Jamil Smith, Rolling Stone, "George Floyd’s Body Is On Trial For Its Own Murder," 9 Apr. 2021 For the rest of his life, Dinning supported his family as a teamster and laborer. Washington Post, "He escaped a lynch mob, then sued its members in court," 19 Feb. 2021 In recent years, Leach had grown into a funny, loyal father of two children and worked as a laborer installing pools, but was out of work because of the pandemic, Zona said., "Armed robbery suspect whom State Police shot and killed had troubled past; family believed it was behind him," 27 Mar. 2021 Bilaal Muhammed, 54, once a janitor and construction laborer, has been unemployed since the onset of the pandemic. Paul Schwartzman, Washington Post, "A city under siege," 15 Jan. 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for laborer

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The first known use of laborer was in the 14th century

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Statistics for laborer

Last Updated

8 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Laborer.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for laborer



English Language Learners Definition of laborer

: a person who does hard physical work for money


la·​bor·​er | \ ˈlā-bər-ər How to pronounce laborer (audio) \

Kids Definition of laborer

: a person who does physical work for pay a farm laborer

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