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labour - definition and synonyms


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noun labour pronunciation in British English /ˈleɪbə(r)/
Word Forms
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  1. 1
    [uncountable] economics the workers in a particular country, industry, or company considered as a group
    the declining demand for labour in agriculture
    a plentiful supply of cheap labour
    skilled/unskilled labour: The demand for skilled labour in the building industry is high.
    casual labour (=people who are not employed regularly): Hotel managers need skilled staff and can’t afford to rely on casual labour.
    1. a.
      the organizations to which workers belong, or their leaders, considered as a group
      a meeting between management and labour
      organized labour: In the 1960s the strength of organized labour was becoming more apparent.
    2. b.
      [only before noun] relating to or involving workers
      a labour dispute
      The company is passing its higher labour costs on to its customers.
  2. 2
    [uncountable] work
    the traditional division of labour between men and women in the home
    The price quoted includes the cost of all labour and materials.
    1. a.




      work, especially hard physical work
      In return for his labours, he receives food and shelter.
  3. 3
    [singular/uncountable] the process by which a baby is pushed from its mothers body when she is giving birth to it
    drugs to ensure pain-free labour and delivery
    go into labour: She went into labour early this morning.
    be in labour: His wife was in labour for six hours.
    1. a.
      [only before noun] relating to a womans labour when she is giving birth to a baby
      labour pains
      a labour ward


a meal served in the evening which consists of foods traditionally eaten at breakfast

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