- Enter a word for the dictionary definition.
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Employ \Em*ploy"\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Employed; p. pr. & vb. n. Employing.] [F. employer, fr. L. implicare to fold into, infold, involve, implicate, engage; in + plicare to fold. See Ply, and cf. Imply, Implicate.] 1. To inclose; to infold. [Obs.] --Chaucer. [1913 Webster] 2. To use; to have in service; to cause to be engaged in doing something; -- often followed by in, about, on, or upon, and sometimes by to; as: (a) To make use of, as an instrument, a means, a material, etc., for a specific purpose; to apply; as, to employ the pen in writing, bricks in building, words and phrases in speaking; to employ the mind; to employ one's energies. [1913 Webster] This is a day in which the thoughts . . . ought to be employed on serious subjects. --Addison. (b) To occupy; as, to employ time in study. (c) To have or keep at work; to give employment or occupation to; to intrust with some duty or behest; as, to employ a hundred workmen; to employ an envoy. [1913 Webster] Jonathan . . . and Jahaziah . . . were employed about this matter. --Ezra x. 15. [1913 Webster] Thy vineyard must employ the sturdy steer To turn the glebe. --Dryden. [1913 Webster] To employ one's self, to apply or devote one's time and attention; to busy one's self. Syn: To use; busy; apply; exercise; occupy; engross; engage. See Use. [1913 Webster]