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[wurk-uh-haw-lik, -hol-ik] /ˌwɜrk əˈhɔ lɪk, -ˈhɒl ɪk/
a person who works compulsively at the expense of other pursuits.
Origin of workaholic
1965-70; work + -aholic
Related forms
workaholism, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for workaholic
  • And no one gives a thought to the workaholic, single-minded quality of their lives.
  • He is an impetuous, headstrong workaholic, who is reluctant to delegate.
  • But he is actually a workaholic with an obsessive-compulsive streak.
  • He is dangerously workaholic, sometimes indecisive, and he struggles to delegate.
  • But probably the bigger reason is that he is an intense workaholic, and resents anything that takes him away from his work.
  • Or to the pasty-faced workaholic, hunched over his computer in a lonely cubicle late at night.
  • She is an edgy, argumentative television film maker who's something of a workaholic.
  • Behind it sat the basketball workaholic who has always known how to solve any problem.
  • On set he has a reputation as a workaholic who keeps to himself.
  • workaholic and non-workaholic dyads reported similar levels of relationship adjustment.
British Dictionary definitions for workaholic


  1. a person obsessively addicted to work
  2. (as modifier): workaholic behaviour
Word Origin
C20: from work + -holic, coined in 1971 by Wayne Oates, US author
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for workaholic

1968, coined from work (n.) with second element abstracted absurdly from alcoholic. This sets up the old Rodney Dangerfield joke: "My old man was a workaholic: every time he thought about work, he got drunk."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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workaholic in Medicine

workaholic work·a·hol·ic (wûr'kə-hô'lĭk)
One who has a compulsive and unrelenting need to work.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Slang definitions & phrases for workaholic

word up


An exhortation to listen, to pay attention: Word up, fool. We be fresh tonight

[1980s+ Black; probably based on listen up]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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