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See more synonyms for moil on Thesaurus.com
verb (used without object)
  1. to work hard; drudge.
  2. to whirl or churn ceaselessly; twist; eddy.
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verb (used with object)
  1. Archaic. to wet or smear.
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  1. hard work or drudgery.
  2. confusion, turmoil, or trouble.
  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.
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Origin of moil

1350–1400; Middle English moillen to make or get wet and muddy < Middle French moillier < Vulgar Latin *molliāre, derivative of Latin mollis soft
Related formsmoil·er, nounmoil·ing·ly, adverbun·moiled, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for moiling

Historical Examples

  • Where the eager crowd is moiling, struggling on with weary tread!

    Rippling Rhymes

    Walt Mason

  • You'll have a little something to live on; and that's all I've done with my toiling and moiling.

  • Like a plough-horse, I have always to be moiling and toiling.

    Madame Bovary

    Gustave Flaubert

  • And a whole army now toiling and moiling for him every night, for him the chief and master.

    The Bill-Toppers

    Andre Castaigne

  • Patriotism, racialism, unionism, had all been lost in a moiling megalopolitanism.

    This Crowded Earth

    Robert Bloch

British Dictionary definitions for moiling


  1. to moisten or soil or become moist, soiled, etc
  2. (intr) to toil or drudge (esp in the phrase toil and moil)
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  1. toil; drudgery
  2. confusion; turmoil
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Derived Formsmoiler, noun

Word Origin

C14 (to moisten; later: to work hard in unpleasantly wet conditions) from Old French moillier, ultimately from Latin mollis soft
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

Word Origin and History for moiling



"to labour in the mire" [Johnson], c.1400, from Old French moillier "to wet, moisten" (12c., Modern French mouiller), from Vulgar Latin *molliare, from Latin mollis "soft," from PIE *mel- "soft" (see mild). Related: Moiled; moiling.

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"toil, labor," 1612, from moil (v.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper