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

In the past, the men of the village worked as migrant laborers in Saudi Arabia, whose border is 80 miles away. Declan Walsh, The Seattle Times, "The tragedy of Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen," 26 Oct. 2018 His parents, Antonio Neves Leitao and Anna Silva Garcia, had emigrated from Cape Verde, an archipelago nation about 385 miles off the coast of Senegal, and worked in Massachusetts as itinerant agricultural laborers. Mitch Smith, New York Times, "George N. Leighton, Lawyer Who Fought Segregation, Dies at 105," 15 June 2018 Boys worked as farm laborers, baling hay and handling chores. Jeff Gammage,, "A search for native children who died on 'Outings' in Pa.," 2 May 2018 Blundstone boots were originally intended for laborers working in Tasmania’s harsh outback during Australia’s colonial days in the late-19th century. Ha Duong, WSJ, "These Are the Ideal, Affordable, All-Weather Men’s Boots," 18 Apr. 2019 Government employees, agricultural laborers, independent contractors, and supervisors (with limited exceptions), as well as domestic workers and those covered by the Railway Labor Act are excluded from the NLRA. Kim Kelly, Teen Vogue, "Freelancers Want to Join Unions but Labor Laws Won't Let Them," 4 Apr. 2019 The phalanxes of Chinese laborers shipped in for the work are often unpopular with locals and largely reliant on host governments to arrange security. Eva Dou, WSJ, "Militants Attack Chinese Consulate in Pakistan," 23 Nov. 2018 Local workers accused the Chinese laborers of undercutting their wages, and things turned ugly. Ellen Mcgirt, Fortune, "raceAhead: The #MeToo Stars Shine at The Golden Globes," 8 Jan. 2018 The laborers to Russia has been going on the whole time. Fox News, "John Bolton on Maduro 'assassination' attempt, Russian election meddling," 5 Aug. 2018

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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Statistics for laborer

Last Updated

16 May 2019

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Time Traveler for laborer

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

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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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More from Merriam-Webster on laborer

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with laborer

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for laborer

Spanish Central: Translation of laborer

Nglish: Translation of laborer for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of laborer for Arabic Speakers

Comments on laborer

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


something valued as if it were money

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