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[wur-ker] /ˈwɜr kər/
a person or thing that works.
a laborer or employee:
steel workers.
a person engaged in a particular field, activity, or cause:
a worker in psychological research; a worker for the Republican Party.
  1. a member of a caste of sexually underdeveloped, nonreproductive bees, specialized to collect food and maintain the hive.
  2. a similar member of a specialized caste of ants, termites, or wasps.
Printing. one of a set of electrotyped plates used to print from (contrasted with molder).
any of several rollers covered with card clothing that work in combination with the stripper rollers and the cylinder in the carding of fibers.
1300-50; Middle English werker, worcher. See work, -er1
Related forms
nonworker, noun
subworker, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for workers
  • Teams of workers sing along with a straining boom box.
  • The point is to increase mechanization and eliminate the need for workers to harvest bunch by bunch.
  • The problem comes with people or farm workers who feel that more is better and end up contaminating the environment.
  • Idle industries have cast workers into unemployment, causing human misery and personal indignity.
  • If workers feel there is a safe outdoor walk or biking path near their work, they're apt to be more active.
  • workers will remove the marble panels that currently block the view to the museum's third floor.
  • Construction workers often lose their lives when erecting great structures.
  • It's intended for health workers in remote parts of developing nations.
  • The workers started by filling metal frames-each measuring ten square feet-with bottles encased between sheets of chicken wire.
  • With collaborative tools, disaster-response teams and relief workers can identify risk zones and emerging threats more rapidly.
British Dictionary definitions for workers


a person or thing that works, usually at a specific job: a good worker, a research worker
an employee in an organization, as opposed to an employer or manager
a manual labourer or other employee working in a manufacturing or other industry
any other member of the working class
a sterile female member of a colony of bees, ants, or wasps that forages for food, cares for the larvae, etc
Derived Forms
workerless, adjective
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 workers



as a type of bee, 1747, agent noun from work (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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