When you schlep something, you lug or carry it with difficulty. If your taxi can't make it up an icy hill, you might have to schlep your groceries all the way up to your house.

If you schlep something, it's either awkward or heavy — or both. You have to pull or drag or tug things when you schlep them. You can also describe an awkward, long, or rough trip as a schlep: "It's such a schlep to get down Grandma's road during mud season." The word has a Yiddish root, shlepen, "to drag," from the Germanic sleifen, also "to drag."

Definitions of schlep

v pull along heavily, like a heavy load against a resistance

pull along, shlep
drag behind
tow (a vessel) with a tug
Type of:
pull, as against a resistance

n a tedious or difficult journey

Type of:
journey, journeying
the act of traveling from one place to another

n (Yiddish) an awkward and stupid person

schlepper, shlep, shlepper
Type of:
simple, simpleton
a person lacking intelligence or common sense

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.