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pick-and-shovel

[pik-uh n-shuhv-uh l] /ˈpɪk ənˈʃʌv əl/
adjective
1.
marked by drudgery; laborious:
the pick-and-shovel work necessary to get a political campaign underway.
Origin of pick-and-shovel
1890-1895
1890-95
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for pick-and-shovel
Historical Examples
  • They are what a veteran of pick-and-shovel methods called them when he first saw one in operation.

    United States Steel Arundel Cotter
  • There are no factories shut down through lack of labor, no projected railroads unbuilt for want of pick-and-shovel men.

    War of the Classes Jack London
  • The professor was not a success as a pick-and-shovel man, though he did his best.

    The Lookout Man B. M. Bower
  • Winton was in the thick of the pick-and-shovel melee, urging it on, when Biggin ran up.

    A Fool For Love Francis Lynde
  • And it can be said that never labourer proved himself more worthy of his hire than the pick-and-shovel man of those early days.

    The Trail of '98 Robert W. Service
  • This is considerably less than pick-and-shovel men get in the community where he lives.

    The Measurement of Intelligence Lewis Madison Terman
  • The theory is that he got discouraged with pick-and-shovel work and fired a blast to bring down a big bunch of copper ore.

    Copper Coleson's Ghost Edward P. Hendrick
  • I still wanted to work, but I decided that I didn't want to start life at its pick-and-shovel end—if I could help it.

  • Up from the gravelly, pick-and-shovel labor of the new-made grave it lifts its weirdly magnetic eyes to the Widow's tears.

    The Indiscreet Letter Eleanor Hallowell Abbott
  • Did you catch and hold the pick-and-shovel men from this camp?

    Empire Builders Francis Lynde

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12
14
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