Saturday, February 9, 2008

Defining Moments 4

moil \MOYL\, intransitive verb:
1. To work with painful effort; to labor; to toil; to drudge.
2. To churn or swirl about continuously.

3. Archaic. to wet or smear.

1. Toil; hard work; drudgery.
2. Confusion; turmoil.
3. Glassmaking. a superfluous piece of glass formed during blowing and removed in the finishing operation.
4. Mining. a short hand tool with a polygonal point, used for breaking or prying out rock.

Moil comes from Middle English moillen, "to soak, to wet," hence "to soil, to soil one's hands, to work very hard," from Old French moillier, "to soften, especially by making wet," ultimately from Latin mollis, "soft."

For example:

The moil was certainly not in the business of generating moils, but day in day out, the moil moiled. It was too much sometimes. What moil.

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