If you’ve ever had to do the laundry, wash the dishes, make the meals, change the bedding, vacuum the house, and clean the bathrooms day after day, you’ve experienced drudgery. Drudgery is hard, mindless, backbreaking work.

When you say the word drudgery, you can almost feel the hard, plodding work that it describes. You have to put some effort into saying the dr- sound. Then, as soon as you get through the breathy -u-, you’ve got two more hard sounds in -dg- and -er- before you get another break with the final vowel sound. Just as you might drag yourself doing those repetitive, grinding chores, you have to drag your way through pronouncing the word.

Definitions of drudgery
  1. noun
    hard monotonous routine work
    synonyms: donkeywork, grind, plodding
    see moresee less
    type of:
    labor, labour, toil
    productive work (especially physical work done for wages)
Word Family

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by Vocabulary.com’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week