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  • noun Plural form of idler.


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  • During the boom years, when dollars were plentiful and the exchange-value of the franc was low, Paris was invaded by such a swarm of artists, writers, students, dilettanti, sight-seers, debauchees, and plain idlers as the world has probably never seen.

    Inside the Whale 1940

  • "If you call idlers gentlemen and ladies, we do not agree as to terms; but if you mean, as I suppose you do, that some people, especially a large proportion of women and girls, do not formally receive a definite amount of money for a definite amount of work, that is true.

    Katie Robertson A Girls Story of Factory Life Margaret E. Winslow

  • The idlers 'mess (all tradesmen in the navy are termed idlers with the exception of carpenters) made an artificial fountain.

    From Lower Deck to Pulpit Henry Cowling 1909

  • I remember, says Hilliard, "a satirical poem, in which the Devil is represented as fishing for men, and adapting his bait to the tastes and temperaments of his prey; but the idlers were the easiest victims, for they swallowed even the naked hook."

    The Pleasures of Life John Lubbock 1873

  • The idlers, that is to say, all the inhabitants of

    Jorrocks' Jaunts and Jollities Robert Smith Surtees 1833

  • 'idlers' -- men of mere nominal occupation, or of none, to whom the game has been familiar from their youth, and who have had little else to do than to play it.

    Some Private Views James Payn 1864

  • Lastly, an immense number of "idlers" are idlers because they do not know well enough the trade by which they are compelled to earn their living.

    The Conquest of Bread Peter Kropotkin

  • In reading the biography of great men, we are struck with the number of "idlers" among them.

    The Conquest of Bread Peter Kropotkin

  • We were eight hundred strong, all told; officers and men; bluejackets of all ratings, and marines; boys and "idlers," as some of the hardest-worked fellows aboard are somewhat inappropriately designated in the watch bill, according to nautical etiquette; as motley a collection at the first start, and yet as fine a set of fellows as you could pick out in a year's cruise!

    Crown and Anchor Under the Pen'ant John B. [Illustrator] Greene

  • This determination come to, the carpenter was summoned aft, and installed into the duties and the berth of the unfortunate Cross; George thus finding his crew reduced to three men, the officers included, and one lad in each watch, the cook and steward of course being "idlers," and their services in the working of the ship only to be demanded on occasions of exceptional urgency.

    The Voyage of the Aurora Harry Collingwood 1886


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