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[saw-yer, soi-er] /ˈsɔ yər, ˈsɔɪ ər/
a person who saws wood, especially as an occupation.
Also called sawyer beetle. any of several long-horned beetles, especially one of the genus Monochamus, the larvae of which bore in the wood of coniferous trees.
Origin of sawyer
1300-50; Middle English sawier, equivalent to sawe saw1 + -ier -ier1
Related forms
undersawyer, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for sawyer
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • sawyer should have reinforced the Seventh with his entire brigade.

    Personal Recollections of a Cavalryman J. H. (James Harvey) Kidd
  • He lived about on the river and in the harbour, working at casual jobs as a sawyer or porter.

    Maxim Gorki

    Hans Ostwald
  • Jack's first impulse was to discredit the sincerity of Mr. sawyer's intention.

    Grandmother Dear

    Mrs. Molesworth
  • How do you know what poor Mr. sawyer said to himself when he was alone in his room that day?

    Grandmother Dear

    Mrs. Molesworth
  • Again he went bar-jumping to chapel, and this time no Mr. sawyer intercepted him.

    Grandmother Dear

    Mrs. Molesworth
British Dictionary definitions for sawyer


a person who saws timber for a living
Word Origin
C14 sawier, from saw1 + -ier, variant of -er1
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 sawyer

mid-13c. "one whose occupation is sawing timber into planks, boards, etc." (as a surname from c.1200), alteration of sawer, agent noun from saw (v.), influenced by French-derived words in -ier (e.g. lawyer, bowyer, clothier).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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