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loaf 1

n. pl. loaves (lōvz)
1. A shaped mass of bread baked in one piece.
2. A shaped, usually rounded or oblong, mass of food: veal loaf.

[Middle English lof, from Old English hlāf, from Proto-Germanic *hlaibaz, perhaps from the same European substrate source as Greek klībanos, krībanos, earthen vessel for baking, tandoor.]
Word History: Loaf, lord, and lady are closely related words that testify to bread's fundamental importance in the Middle Ages. Curiously, though bread was a staple food in many Indo-European cultures, loaf and its cognates occur only in the Germanic languages, and lord and lady only in English. Loaf derives from Old English hlāf, "bread, loaf of bread," related to Gothic hlaifs, Old Norse hleifr, and Modern German Laib, all of which mean "loaf of bread." Hlāf survives in Lammas, originally Hlāfmaesse, "Loaf-Mass," the Christian Feast of the First Fruits, traditionally celebrated on August 1. Lord comes from Old English hlāford, a compound meaning "loaf-ward, keeper of bread," because a lord maintains and feeds his household and offers hospitality. Similarly, lady derives from Old English hlǣfdige, which became lady by 1382. The -dige comes from dæge, "kneader," and is related to our dough. A lady, therefore, is "a kneader of bread, a breadmaker." Lord and lady both retain vestiges of their original meanings, although England's aristocrats have not been elbow deep in flour, let alone dough, for several centuries.

loaf 2

intr.v. loafed, loaf·ing, loafs
To pass time at leisure; idle.

[Probably back-formation from loafer.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.loafing - having no employmentloafing - having no employment      
inactivity - being inactive; being less active
dolce far niente - carefree idleness
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Social loafing refers to the reduction in effort that occurs when an individual works collectively on a task compared to when working alone on a task (Karau & Williams, 1993; Latane, Williams, & Harkins, 1979).
Although the aforementioned studies highlight the debilitating effects that social loafing can have upon individual- and team-performance in athletic tasks, social-loafing research in interactive team-sport settings is scarce.
This is known as social loafing, which refers to the decrease in individual effort that people exhibit when performing in groups as compared to when they perform alone (Latane, Williams, & Harkins, 1979).
of Nashville, Tenn., said on Tuesday it would acquire the last papers owned by Creative Loafing Inc.
A bankruptcy judge in Tampa Tuesday could settle the question of who should own the alternative weekly chain Creative Loafing -- the CEO whose family founded the business three decades ago or the investment group that loaned the company tens of millions to expand, only to see the papers end up in Chapter 11 protection?
An assumption in the social loafing literature is that contingent rewards and contingent punishments have symmetrical effects on the reduction of social loafing in groups.
Wednesday's Bankruptcy Court heading in Tampa, Fla., was supposed to a critical day to determine the future ownership of bankrupt alternative weeklies publisher Creative Loafing.
The phenomenon that average individual performance decreases with increasing group size has become known as the Ringelmann Effect or, more recently, social loafing.
A federal judge in Atlanta has ruled that Creative Loafing owner and CEO Ben Eaton can remain in control of the second-largest chain of alternative newspapers as it goes through Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
A federal bankruptcy judge has refused at least for now a motion by the creditors of Creative Loafing to wrest control of the alternative weekly chain from its chairman and CEO Ben Eason.
Creative Loafing's four Southeastern alternative weeklies are following their sibilings in Chicago and Washington, D.C., to Ruxton Media Group, the national ad rep firm said Wednesday.
The alternative weekly landscape contracted again today as the Tampa, Fla.-based Creative Loafing agreed to acquire the Chicago Reader and the Washington City Paper.