What is the meaning of work?


  • Activity directed toward making or doing something.
    • usage: "she checked several points needing further work"
  • A product produced or accomplished through the effort or activity or agency of a person or thing.
    • usage: "it is not regarded as one of his more memorable works"; "the symphony was hailed as an ingenious work"; "he was indebted to the pioneering work of John Dewey"; "the work of an active imagination"; "erosion is the work of wind or water over time"
  • The occupation for which you are paid.
    • usage: "he is looking for employment"; "a lot of people are out of work"
  • Applying the mind to learning and understanding a subject (especially by reading. )
    • usage: "mastering a second language requires a lot of work"; "no schools offer graduate study in interior design"
  • Physics) a manifestation of energy; the transfer of energy from one physical system to another expressed as the product of a force and the distance through which it moves a body in the direction of that force. (
    • usage: "work equals force times distance"
  • A place where work is done.
    • usage: "he arrived at work early today"
  • The total output of a writer or artist (or a substantial part of it. )
    • usage: "he studied the entire Wagnerian oeuvre"; "Picasso's work can be divided into periods"


  • Exert oneself by doing mental or physical work for a purpose or out of necessity.
    • usage: "I will work hard to improve my grades"; "she worked hard for better living conditions for the poor"
  • Be employed.
    • usage: "Is your husband working again"; "My wife never worked"; "Do you want to work after the age of 60"; "She never did any work because she inherited a lot of money"; "She works as a waitress to put herself through college"
  • Have an effect or outcome; often the one desired or expected.
    • usage: "The voting process doesn't work as well as people thought"; "How does your idea work in practice"; "This method doesn't work"; "The breaks of my new car act quickly"; "The medicine works only if you take it with a lot of water"
  • Perform as expected when applied.
    • usage: "The washing machine won't go unless it's plugged in"; "Does this old car still run well"; "This old radio doesn't work anymore"
  • Shape, form, or improve a material.
    • usage: "work stone into tools"; "process iron"; "work the metal"
  • Give a workout to.
    • usage: "Some parents exercise their infants"; "My personal trainer works me hard"; "work one's muscles"; "this puzzle will exercise your mind"
  • Proceed along a path.
    • usage: "work one's way through the crowd"; "make one's way into the forest"
  • Operate in a certain place, area, or specialty.
    • usage: "She works the night clubs"; "The salesman works the Midwest"; "This artist works mostly in acrylics"
  • Proceed towards a goal or along a path or through an activity.
    • usage: "work your way through every problem or task"; "She was working on her second martini when the guests arrived"; "Start from the bottom and work towards the top"
  • Move in an agitated manner.
    • usage: "His fingers worked with tension"
  • Cause to happen or to occur as a consequence.
    • usage: "I cannot work a miracle"; "wreak havoc"; "bring comments"; "play a joke"; "The rain brought relief to the drought-stricken area"
  • Cause to work.
    • usage: "he is working his servants hard"
  • Prepare for crops.
    • usage: "Work the soil"; "cultivate the land"
  • Behave in a certain way when handled.
    • usage: "This dough does not work easily"; "The soft metal works well"
  • Have and exert influence or effect.
    • usage: "The artist's work influenced the young painter"; "She worked on her friends to support the political candidate"
  • Operate in or through.
    • usage: "Work the phones"
  • Cause to operate or function.
    • usage: "This pilot works the controls"; "Can you work an electric drill"
  • Provoke or excite.
    • usage: "The rock musician worked the crowd of young girls into a frenzy"
  • Gratify and charm, usually in order to influence.
    • usage: "the political candidate worked the crowds"
  • Make something, usually for a specific function.
    • usage: "She molded the rice balls carefully"; "Form cylinders from the dough"; "shape a figure"; "Work the metal into a sword"
  • Move into or onto.
    • usage: "work the raisins into the dough"; "the student worked a few jokes into his presentation"; "work the body onto the flatbed truck"
  • Make uniform.
    • usage: "knead dough"; "work the clay until it is soft"
  • Use or manipulate to one's advantage.
    • usage: "He exploit the new taxation system"; "She knows how to work the system"; "he works his parents for sympathy"
  • Find the solution to (a problem or question) or understand the meaning of.
    • usage: "did you solve the problem"; "Work out your problems with the boss"; "this unpleasant situation isn't going to work itself out"; "did you get it"; "Did you get my meaning"; "He could not work the math problem"
  • Cause to undergo fermentation.
    • usage: "We ferment the grapes for a very long time to achieve high alcohol content"; "The vintner worked the wine in big oak vats"
  • Go sour or spoil.
    • usage: "The milk has soured"; "The wine worked"; "The cream has turned-we have to throw it out"
  • Arrive at a certain condition through repeated motion.
    • usage: "The stitches of the hem worked loose after she wore the skirt many times"
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APAWordNet. (2010). work. Retrieved April 22, 2019, from http://smartdefine.org/work/definitions/1191104
ChicagoWordNet. 2010. "work" http://smartdefine.org/work/definitions/1191104 (accessed April 22, 2019).
HarvardWordNet 2010, work, Smart Define, viewed 22 April, 2019, <http://smartdefine.org/work/definitions/1191104>.
MLAWordNet. "work" 23 October 2010. Web. 22 April 2019. <http://smartdefine.org/work/definitions/1191104>
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