What does workhouse mean?

Definitions for workhouse
ˈwɜrkˌhaʊs; -ˌhaʊ zɪzwork·house

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word workhouse.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. workhouse(noun)

    a poorhouse where able-bodied poor are compelled to labor

  2. workhouse(noun)

    a county jail that holds prisoners for periods up to 18 months


  1. workhouse(Noun)

    formerly, an institution for the poor homeless, funded by the local parish where the able-bodied were required to work

  2. workhouse(Noun)

    a prison in which the sentence includes manual labour

Webster Dictionary

  1. Workhouse(noun)

    a house where any manufacture is carried on; a workshop

  2. Workhouse(noun)

    a house in which idle and vicious persons are confined to labor

  3. Workhouse(noun)

    a house where the town poor are maintained at public expense, and provided with labor; a poorhouse

  4. Origin: [AS. weorchs.]


  1. Workhouse

    In England and Wales a workhouse, colloquially known as a spike, was a place where those unable to support themselves were offered accommodation and employment. The earliest known use of the term dates from 1631, in an account by the mayor of Abingdon reporting that "wee haue erected wthn our borough a workehouse to sett poore people to worke". The origins of the workhouse can be traced to the Poor Law Act of 1388, which attempted to address the labour shortages following the Black Death in England by restricting the movement of labourers, and ultimately led to the state becoming responsible for the support of the poor. But mass unemployment following the end of the Napoleonic Wars in 1815, the introduction of new technology to replace agricultural workers in particular, and a series of bad harvests, meant that by the early 1830s the established system of poor relief was proving to be unsustainable. The New Poor Law of 1834 attempted to reverse the economic trend by discouraging the provision of relief to anyone who refused to enter a workhouse. Some Poor Law authorities hoped to run workhouses at a profit by utilising the free labour of their inmates, who generally lacked the skills or motivation to compete in the open market. Most were employed on tasks such as breaking stones, bone crushing to produce fertilizer, or picking oakum using a large metal nail known as a spike, perhaps the origin of the workhouse's nickname.

How to pronounce workhouse?

  1. Alex
    US English

How to say workhouse in sign language?

  1. workhouse


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of workhouse in Chaldean Numerology is: 7

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of workhouse in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Images & Illustrations of workhouse

  1. workhouseworkhouseworkhouseworkhouseworkhouse

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"workhouse." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 28 Mar. 2020. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/workhouse>.

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