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galley slave

noun

  1. a person condemned to work at an oar on a galley.
  2. a drudge.


galley slave

noun

  1. a criminal or slave condemned to row in a galley
  2. informal.
    a drudge


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Word History and Origins

Origin of galley slave1

First recorded in 1560–70
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Example Sentences

Do not drudge like a galley-slave, nor do business in a laborious manner, as if you wish to be pitied or wondered at.

I am sure, no galley-slave ever took to his oar with more reluctance than poor Frazer.

Surely he would have then concluded me as constant at the bordello, as the galley-slave at his oar.

Six months back home, toiling like a galley slave, furnished requisite funds for another fling at New York.

The galley slave led a life of luxurious ease compared with John Burkett Ryder.

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galley proofgalley-west