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The following statistics are based on the British National Corpus, so they are representative for the British English.

Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the noun labour:


Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the verb labour:


The word labour and its family (laboured, labouring, labours) are included in the Academic Word List by Dr. Averil Coxhead, which contains the 570 most frequent word families used in academic texts from a variety of subject areas, of interest for students that learn the words most needed to study at tertiary institutions.

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Definition of the noun labour

What does labour mean as a name of something?

Labour is one of the top 1000 most common nouns in the English language.

noun - plural:

  • labour: labours
  • Labour: -

  1. a social class comprising those who do manual labor or work for wages
  2. concluding state of pregnancy; from the onset of contractions to the birth of a child
  3. a political party formed in Great Britain in 1900; characterized by the promotion of labor's interests and formerly the socialization of key industries
  4. productive work (especially physical work done for wages)

Alternative definition of the noun labour


  1. Effort expended on a particular task; toil, work.
  2. [uncountable] Workers in general; the working class, the workforce; sometimes specifically the labour movement, organised labour.
  3. [uncountable] A political party or force aiming or claiming to represent the interests of labour.
  4. The act of a mother giving birth
  5. The time period during which a mother gives birth.

Definition of the verb labour

What does labour mean as a doing word?

verb - inflections: laboured | labouring | labours

  1. work hard
  2. strive and make an effort to reach a goal
    • syntax:
      Syntactic formulaExample for the syntactic formula
      [Actor - being or organization, plural] [Verb] at [Theme, subject control with -ing]They worked at finishing the task
      [Actor - being or organization, plural] [Verb] on [Theme, not sentential clause]They collaborated on the task | They worked on the task
      [Actor 1 - being or organization] [Verb] with [Actor 2] on [Theme, not sentential clause]John collaborated with Paul on the task | John worked with Paul on the task
      [Actor 1 - being or organization, plural] [Verb] with [Actor 2] at [Theme, subject control with -ing]John worked with Paul at finishing the task

      Cooperate Verbs (with the same syntax): work.

    • lexical domain: Activities - verbs of political and social activities and events
    • synonyms of labour: drive / labor / push / tug
    • more generic words: fight / struggle = make a strenuous or labored effort
    • more specific words: strain / strive / reach = to exert much effort or energy
  3. undergo the efforts of childbirth

Alternative definition of the verb labour


  1. [intransitive] To toil, to work.
  2. [transitive] To belabour, to emphasise or expand upon (a point in a debate, etc).


The Labour is a functional constituency in the elections for the Legislative Council of Hong Kong first created in 1985. The constituency is composed of bodies that are trade unions of which all the voting members are employees.


  1. "Labour" is to be the first novel published by JT LeRoy since it was revealed that it was the pen-name of Laura Albert. It is also another collaboration with illustrator Cherry Hood who also illustrated Harold's End. The publication has been controversial as it remains undertermined whether there is still an audience for work under the name JT LeRoy.
    • language: English Language
    • genre: Novella
  2. "Labour" is a book by György Lukács.
  3. "Labour" is a book by Robert Clough.
    • also known as "Labour: a party fit for imperialism"
  4. "Labour" is a book by John McClintock.
    • also known as "Labour. A baccalaureate address delivered before the senior class, Dickinson College, July 7, 1841"


  1. Labour: A worker is someone who performs work. A worker may also be called a "laborer", and is usually a term which contrasts with a professional. It was traditionally considered unskilled manual labor. In the division of labor, laborers have all blasting, hand tools, power tool, air tools, and small heavy equipment, and act as assistants to other trades , e.g. operators or cement masons. The first century BC engineer Vitruvius writes in detail about laborer practices at that time. In his experience a good crew of laborers is just as valuable as any other aspect of construction. Other than the addition of pneumatics, laborer practices have changed little. With the advent of advanced technology and its introduction into the construction field, the laborers have been quick to include much of this technology as being laborers work.
  2. LaBour is a family name.

Phrases with Labour

Phrases starting with the word Labour:

  1. labour camp
  2. Labour Force
  3. labour pains
  4. labour party
  5. labour of love
  6. labour-intensive

Phrases ending with the word Labour:

  1. New Labour
  2. Slave Labour
  3. Bonded Labour
  4. manual labour
  5. premature labour
  6. Division of labour

Other phrases containing the word Labour:

  1. british labour party
  2. international labour organization

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Labour

Click on a title to look inside that book (if available):

Google previewA Cyclopedia of Biblical Literature,... Illustrated by Numerous Engravings (1845)

LABOUR is that steady and constant effort of ...

Google previewA cyclopædia of biblical literature, ed. by J. Kitto (1845)

by John Kitto

LABOUR is that steady and constant effort of ...

Google previewDigital Labour and Karl Marx (2014)

by Christian Fuchs

Labour is the decisive factor in production: it transfers the value of constant capital to the new commodity and adds new value to the commodity. The commodity that is produced in capitalism is therefore more than the sum of its parts (constant ...

Google previewDewhurst's Textbook of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (2011)

by Keith Edmonds

Connecticut, USA Labour is the physiological process by which the products of conception are passed from the uterus to the outside world, and is common to all mammalian viviparous species. The mean duration of a human singleton ...

Google previewModern Analysis of Value Theory (2012)

by Y. Fujimori

Labour is a function of £a 4 oun-powen, which is man's mental and physical capabilities.

Google previewCost Accounting (2010)

by Rajasekaran V.

labour is the constraint factor (production is limited). 3. the sales quantity is limited. 4. the sales value is limited. Solution Repeat the first 4 steps as in illustration 1, and then continue: 1 7.1 .2 Results of Analysis (After Taking into Account the ...

Google previewInternational Encyclopedia of Social Policy (2013)

by Tony Fitzpatrick, Huck-ju Kwon, Nick Manning, James Midgley, Gillian Pascall

Labour costs are usually stated as a ratio of costs and expenses to one hour of labour time.

Google previewA Dictionary of Christ and the Gospels: Labour-Zion, with appendix and indexes (1908)

by James Hastings, John Alexander Selbie, John Chisholm Lambert

LABOUR.— The verb /toiriaV in NT Greek signifies not onl3T the weariness produced by constant toil (see Jn 4* ircKoirtaKws), winch is the idea attach- in'.' to the word in classical writings (cf. Liddell and Scott's Lex. t.v.) ; it also hits reference to ...

Google previewConcise Encyclopedia of Democracy (2013)

by The Staff of Congressional Quarterly

Organization The Labour Party has an unusually complicated organization that reflects its trade union origins. People may become party members either by joining individual constituency branches or by affiliated membership through a trade ...

Google previewChambers's Encyclopaedia, Dictionary of Universal Knowledge, Volume VI, Humber to Malta (1901)

Labour, in Political Economy, may be defined as effort for the satisfying of human needs. It is one of the three leading factors in production, the other two being land (or natural objects) and capital; and it is more fundamental than capital, which ...

Google previewHistorical Dictionary of the British Empire (1996)

by James Stuart Olson, Robert Shadle

LABOUR PARTY AND IMPERIALISM. The British Labour Party dates from 1900, and, though it was always closely associated with the trade union movement, it also counted among its constituents independent working-class bodies, socialists , ...

Online dictionaries and encyclopedias with entries for Labour

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Photos about Labour

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View more pictures about Child labour.

If you need related images for an article or a report, you can download stock photos:
Small photo of labourSmall photo of labourSmall photo of cargo steel slab discharging from the ship vessel laying onto the lorry trailer by labour stevedore, the shipment export and import under logistics system services to global worldwide transportSmall photo of labourSmall photo of Morley Leeds UK May 9 2017 Labour supporters gather around MP Jeremy Corbyn to hear him speak ahead of the forthcoming 2017 general election - EditorialSmall photo of MOSCOW, RUSSIA - MAY 13, 2018: A stamp printed in Netherlands shows Symbolic depiction of measuring labour conditions, Labour Inspection serie, circa 1990Small photo of Pregnant woman having contractions in labour pain More...

Videos about Labour

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View more videos about New Labour, Labour Camp, Child Labour, Labour Force, Labour Party, Slave Labour, Manual labour, Labour of Love, and Division of labour.

See also the pronunciation examples of Labour!

Quotes about Labour

I was a Labour Party man but I found myself to the left of the Labour party in Nelson, militant as that was. I came to London and in a few months I was a Trotskyist. (C.L.R. James)
more quotes about labour...

Scrabble value of L1A1B3O1U1R1

The value of this 6-letter word is 8 points. It is included in the first and second editions of the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary.

Anagrams of LABOUR

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See also the blanagrams of Labour!

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