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clock watcher

an employee who demonstrates lack of interest in a job by watching the time closely to be sure to stop work as soon as the workday or shift is over.
any person who watches the time closely, as in expectation of some news or event.
Origin of clock watcher
First recorded in 1885-90
Related forms
clock watching, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for clock-watcher


an employee who checks the time in anticipation of a break or of the end of the working day
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for clock-watcher

"employee habitually prompt in leaving," 1887, from clock (n.1) + agent noun from watch (v.). Related: Clock-watching.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for clock-watcher


noun phrase

A person who vouchsafes more attention to the time of quitting than to work: a hard worker, no clockwatcher (1890+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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