WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2015
slave /sleɪv/USA pronunciation n., v., slaved, slav•ing.

n. [countable]
  • one who is the property of another and who must obey him or her:The Emancipation Proclamation freed only the slaves in the South and not the slaves in the border states.
  • one under the control or influence of another person or power:a slave to his desires.
  • Mechanical Engineeringa mechanism under control of and repeating the actions of a similar mechanism.

  • v. 
  • [no object; often: ~ + away ( + at + object);
    often: ~ ( + away) + over + object]
    to work like a slave:He slaved away all last night (at fixing the kitchen cabinets). I slaved over the hot stove to prepare the meal.


  • Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

    slave /sleɪv/ n
    1. a person legally owned by another and having no freedom of action or right to property
    2. a person who is forced to work for another against his will
    3. a person under the domination of another person or some habit or influence
    4. a person who works in harsh conditions for low pay
    5. a device that is controlled by or that duplicates the action of another similar device (the master device)
    vb
    1. (intransitive) often followed by away: to work like a slave
    Etymology: 13th Century: via Old French from Medieval Latin Sclāvus a Slav, one held in bondage (from the fact that the Slavonic races were frequently conquered in the Middle Ages), from Late Greek Sklabos a Slav



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