Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A man who performs manual or industrial labor for wages.
  • n. A craftsman or artisan.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A man who labours for wages
  • n. An artisan or craftsman

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A man employed in labor, whether in tillage or manufactures; a worker.
  • n. Hence, especially, a skillful artificer or laborer.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A man who is employed in manual labor, whether skilled or unskilled; a worker; a toiler; specifically, an artificer, mechanic, or artisan; a handicraftsman.
  • n. In general, one who works in any department of physical or mental labor; specifically, a worker considered with especial reference to his manner of or skill in work—that is, workmanship.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an employee who performs manual or industrial labor

Etymologies

From Middle English werkman, from Old English weorcmann ("workman"), equivalent to work +‎ man. Compare Dutch werkman ("workman"), German Werkmann ("labourer, workman"), Icelandic verkamaður ("workman"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • So all the world, like the British workman, is 'twixt the devil and the deep sea.

    THE SCAB

  • An American workman will "give equal attention simultaneously to three, four, or six machines or tools, while the British workman is compelled by his trade union to limit his attention to one, so that employment may be given to half-a-dozen men."

    THE SCAB

  • But if the workman is not able to pay for it, he will not have the speed and steam, that is all.

    COFFEE-HOUSES AND DOSS-HOUSES

  • The forces of supply and demand determine these prices — and the price of a skilled workman is no exception.

    The new underclass : Law is Cool

  • A period had been reached, and he was rounding it off in workman-like fashion.

    Chapter 40

  • Now the skillful workman is very careful indeed as to what he takes into his brain-attic.

    May I Be Excused? My Brain Is Full.

  • In the café entrance a workman is setting up a second-hand radio on a wall.

    Naguib Mahfouz - Prose

  • The British taxpayer, of course, in the end pays, but the British workman is kept busy producing the goods.

    The British Election

  • The British workman is a handy man and he helps by making benches and other rough furniture and equipment.

    Great Britain—Progress and Prospects

  • The doctrine that the workman is entitled to a living wage has become obsolete.

    A Pernicious Propaganda

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