a. Performing work: a working committee.
b. Operating or functioning as required: a working flashlight.
2. Having a paying job; employed: working mothers.
a. Spent at work: a working life of 40 years.
b. Taken while continuing to work: a working vacation.
a. Sufficient to allow action: a working majority.
b. Adequate for practical use: a working knowledge of Spanish.
5. Serving as a basis or guide for further work: a working hypothesis.
n. often workings
1. The manner in which something operates or functions: the workings of the mind.
2. The parts of a mine or quarry that have been or are being excavated.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.