AskDefine | Define workhorse

Word Net



1 machine that performs dependably under heavy use; "the IBM main frame computers have been the workhorse of the business world"
2 a horse used for plowing and hauling and other heavy labor

Moby Thesaurus

beast of burden, bidet, buck, carriage horse, cart horse, cavalry horse, draft horse, dray horse, driving horse, drudge, fag, fill horse, filler, galley slave, gigster, greasy grind, grind, grub, hack, hackney, horse, hunter, jument, lead, leader, mount, pack horse, palfrey, peon, plodder, plow horse, pole horse, polo pony, post-horse, remount, rider, riding horse, road horse, roadster, rouncy, saddle horse, saddler, sawbuck, shaft horse, slave, slavey, slogger, stalking-horse, sumpter, sumpter horse, swot, thill horse, thiller, toiler, trestle, wheeler, wheelhorse



From work + horse.



  1. A horse used primarily for work; a draft horse
  2. (by extension) Anyone or thing that does a lot of work; who works consistently or regularly.
    Those old machines are not very glamorous, but even 20 years after their introduction, they are still the workhorses of the industry.
Workhorse is:
  • An expression that refers to the draft horse common in agricultural societies. The expression can refer to a machine, one that performs dependably under heavy, prolonged use, or a person, who works tirelessly at difficult, time-consuming tasks.
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