From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishworkwork1 /wɜːk $ wɜːrk/ ●●● S1 W1 verb 🔊 🔊 1 do a job for money [intransitive]WORK/DO WORK to do a job that you are paid for 🔊 Where do you work? 🔊 Many young people in the area have never worked. 🔊 The injury means he’ll probably never work again.work for 🔊 He works for a law firm.work at/in 🔊 I work at the university.work as 🔊 She works as a consultant for a design company.work in industry/education/publishing etc 🔊 The studies were undertaken by people working in education.work part-time/full-time 🔊 I work part-time in a library.• You work in a city or area: He works in Manhattan.• You work in a type of place such as a bank, shop, or factory: She works in a library.• You work at a particular place or organization: She works at the Library of Congress. • You work for a person, company, or organization that employs you: He works for his father.We both work for the same company.• You work in an industry or a type of job, for example education, advertising, or IT: He works in advertising.• You work as a waiter, cashier, accountant etc: She works as a cook. ✗Don’t say: She works as cook.• You work on a project or task: Several people worked on the report.2 do your job [intransitive, transitive]WORK/DO WORK to do the activities and duties that are part of your job 🔊 Sally isn’t working tomorrow. 🔊 Staff will have to get used to a new way of working.work with 🔊 One of the women I work with is getting married this weekend.work under somebody (=have someone who is in charge of you) 🔊 Each site has a fully trained team who work under a site manager.work days/nights/weekends etc 🔊 I get paid more if I work nights. 🔊 We’re sometimes expected to work twelve-hour days. 🔊 Are you working late (=working after the time you usually finish) again tonight? 🔊 Forty police officers are working round the clock (=working day and night without stopping) to find Murray’s killer. 🔊 Nowadays, many people are able to work from home.3 help [intransitive]WORK/DO WORK if you work with someone or a group of people, your job involves trying to help themwork with/among 🔊 She’s just retired after 38 years working with children. 🔊 He has worked among some of the world’s poorest people.4 do an activity [intransitive]WORK/DO WORK to spend time and effort doing something 🔊 I’ve been working in the garden all afternoon. 🔊 I’m going to have to work really hard to pass these exams. 🔊 We’re working together to develop a new system.5 try to achieve something [intransitive]TRY TO DO OR GET something to try continuously to achieve a particular thingwork towards 🔊 They are working towards a solution to their problems.work for 🔊 We will work for the release of the hostages.work to do something 🔊 The police are working to provide more help for victims of crime. 🔊 The company is working hard to improve its image. 🔊 He worked tirelessly (=worked very hard in a determined way) for the charity throughout his life.6 machine/equipment a) [intransitive]WORKING/NOT BROKEN if a machine or piece of equipment works, it does what it is supposed to do 🔊 You should check that the smoke alarm is working properly. 🔊 The delete key doesn’t work.get something to work 🔊 I can’t get the heater to work. b) [transitive]SWITCH ON OR OFF to make a machine or piece of equipment do what it is supposed to do 🔊 My parents can’t even work the video.7 be effective/successful [intransitive]SUCCEED IN DOING something to be effective or successful 🔊 Making a marriage work can take a lot of effort. 🔊 I’ve never found a diet that works. 🔊 The recipe works just as well if you use margarine instead of butter. 🔊 The cream works immediately to relieve sore skin.work for 🔊 You need to find which method works best for you.work against 🔊 a drug that works against some types of cancer8 have an effect [intransitive always + adverb/preposition]EFFECT/INFLUENCE if something such as a fact, situation, or system works in a particular way, it has a particular effect on someone or something 🔊 The arrangement works well for everyone involved. 🔊 The French team are the heavier crew, which should work in their favour (=help them). 🔊 Sexism still works against (=harms or causes problems for) women in many professions. 🔊 Loyalty works both ways (=involves two opposite or matching effects): we are loyal to our employees and, in turn, they are loyal to us.9 art/style/literature [intransitive]EFFECTIVE if a painting, design, piece of writing etc works, it is successful because it has the effect on you that the painter, writer etc intended 🔊 I don’t think the scene with the horses really works, do you?work for 🔊 The colour combination just doesn’t work for me.10 shape/cut something [transitive]TIC if you work a material such as metal, leather, or clay, you cut, sew, or shape it in order to make something11 use a substance [intransitive]TIC to use a particular material or substance in order to make something such as a picture, design, jewellery etcwork in/with 🔊 a sculptor who works in steel 🔊 a jeweller who works with silver12 → work your way to/through etc something13 → work your way through school/college/university etc14 move gradually [intransitive, transitive always + adverb/preposition]MOVE something OR somebodyMOVE/CHANGE POSITION to move into a particular state or position very gradually, either in a series of small movements or after a long time 🔊 Slowly he worked the screwdriver into the crack.work (its way) loose 🔊 One of the screws must have worked loose.15 exercise [transitive]MOVE something OR somebody to use and exercise a muscle or part of your body 🔊 Swimming is a form of exercise that works every muscle in your body.16 move [intransitive, transitive] formal if a part of your body works or you work it, it moves 🔊 She was trembling and her mouth was working.17 work in an area [transitive] especially American EnglishTRAVEL if you work a particular area or type of place, you travel around the area for your job, or work in that type of place 🔊 Markowitz works the Tri-State area.18 → work the door19 entertain a crowd [transitive] if an entertainer or politician works a crowd of people, they entertain them and get their interest or support 🔊 She really knew how to work a crowd.20 land/soil [transitive]TAC if you work the land, soil etc, you do all the work necessary to grow crops on it 🔊 He was left to work the farm alone.21 mine [transitive]TI to remove a substance such as coal, gold, or oil from under the ground22 → work like magic/work like a charm23 mind/brain [intransitive]THINK ABOUT if your mind or brain is working, you are thinking or trying to solve a problem24 → work on the principle/assumption/basis etc that25 → work yourself into a frenzy/panic/state etc26 → work it/things27 → work the system28 → work somebody hard29 → work your fingers to the bone30 → work your butt/ass/arse off31 calculate [transitive] American English formalHM to calculate the answer to a mathematical problem32 → work to rule33 → (it) works for me/you etc34 → work a trend/look etc → work wonders at wonder2(4), → work miracles at miracle(4), → work your magic at magic1(5) → work around somebody/something → work around to something → work at something → work somebody/something in → work something ↔ off → work on somebody/something → work out → work somebody over → work through → work up → work up to something→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpuswork• "I can't open the jar." "Try putting it in hot water. That sometimes works."• His illness eventually prevented him from working.• I've tried several different diets, but none of them seem to work.• Even where reform has been radical, it has not always worked.• Does the old tape recorder still work?• Does the TV work?• I've been working all day in the garden.• He's changed his job and is now working as a consultant for a German firm.• Her father was an artist who sometimes worked as a salesman and labourer.• For nineteen years, my father worked for the General Electric Corporation.• Frank's been working here for 32 years.• I'd never worked in a lab before I came here.• The research represents the second stage of cross-national collaborative studies undertaken by colleagues working in education in a number of countries.• It is the people who work in the institutions who are most exposed to our dislike.• I bought a bottle of stain remover, and it worked like magic.• Are you prepared to work longer hours occasionally, to get the work done?• Five mornings a week, she worked on campus.• I have to work on Saturday too.• Voice over 16 officers are still working on the case full time.• MacArthur says that the husband alone should work outside the home.• I have no idea how to work these new phones.• Does anyone here know how to work this microwave?• He only works three days a week now.• an organization that is working to preserve California's redwood trees• Not all cancer patients prefer to continue working while undergoing treatment.• Four teachers agreed to work without pay until things were settled.work for• I think Linda works for a law firm.• Trainor spent a lifetime working for equal rights.• My Dad's been working for IBM for over twenty years.• Russell is working as a software developer for Microsoft.• How long have you worked for Mr Jackson?work with• Jerry will be working with me on the project.work with/among• Anyone who worked with him recognised his uncanny ability to find something oddly heroic in all the manifestations of human weakness.• They made no objections to my method and seemed to enjoy working with me.• He worked with Ramsey on several ecumenical committees and respected his mind.• I saw outstanding examples of team work with results impressive in their professionalism.• Also, the posts were round in cross-section, whereas we always worked with square ones.• Macro does a lot of work with the federal government.• More people are going back to work with their hands than ever before.• Now he has had a chance to work with them and perhaps better understands the intricacies of their job.work ... hard• For some managers a busy looking, paper strewn desk, seems to convey that they are very busy and working hard.• We were well educated and we worked hard.• There is an new bread of youth, an elite who work hard and play hard.• Or they make a sumptuous meal and they work very hard and watch their children and wait for their men.• Carrington worked hard, and with dedication, winning a scholarship.• This is your night, your class, and you've worked hard for it.• Instead, they must work hard throughout the period of change until they have integrated new behaviors into daily routines.• Our distributors worked hard to sell our products.work to do something• I believed we were working to build a wonderful future.• It takes time and work to build credibility.• More and more are going into politics with the specific intention of working to change the present unjust system.• He said the airline was now working to clear the backlog, with the delayed flights expected to depart within 24 hours.• He worked to dispel his doubts about his friend as though to pass another test, like his ordeal in the park.• In the United States, researchers are working to find the chemical responsible for odour changes. 6.• We worked hard to persuade the French to attend the meeting.• The Connecticut couple went to Wiedenheft and are working to salvage their marriage.• What's more, a steering box's non-reversibility works to your advantage in a front-drive car.get something to work• Danger is a great thing for getting the body to work!• I'd like the Laboratory building checked first, and as quickly as possible so that the staff can get back to work.• Instead, the two have got together to work on a new service where users will pay for their downloads.• It sounds simple, but Aprilia and Orbital faced a tough challenge getting the system to work.• Lunch is over and she has to get back to work.• Or can I get the heater to work?• When you succeed, pat yourself on the back, take a five-minute break to celebrate, then get back to work.work against• Tax laws tend to work against small businesses.work in ... favour• But de Gaulle held firm because he knew that time was working in his favour.• Some analysts argue that this could work in Merrem's favour.• Somehow it all works in their favour.• The contrast with Yeats is instructive, and it doesn't work in Pound's favour.• Remember - anything that reduces the casualty count will work in your favour because of your fixed rank bonus.• Also, the preponderance of men means that the mating game works in favour of women.• Bags can work in our favour too.work in/with• A similar dynamic was at work with a 1998 initiative campaign that would have allowed open primaries.• He does not show up for work in a bathrobe, even a White House one.• We spend 6 weeks working with local churches doing outreach, and then have one final week of school.• But when they are scalping, they are working in the public interest.• Many people ask to work in the shop, he says.• Petar now goes by the name of Peter and works in the Unmik administration.• I prefer to work in watercolors.• Obviously, works in which the composer creates a continuous musical bridge between one movement and the next.• That doesn't happen when some one works with you as a director, and Jack was like a director, too.work (its way) loose• Check that all cables are firmly in their sockets and have not worked loose.• I therefore put muzzles on all the ferrets I intend to work loose.• It was these bolt which had worked loose.• Since aluminium expands more than steel the steel bolts had worked loose.• This stops them working loose as yours have done and subsequently ruining the engine.?• If these work loose, feedback can arise, so check and tighten if necessary.• The males are usually used as line ferrets and the females are worked loose, muzzled or otherwise.