chained\ to\ the\ oars

adj. phr.
the condition of being forced to do strenuous and unwelcome labor against one's wishes for an extended period of time.

Teachers in large public schools frequently complain that they feel as if they had been chained to the oars.


Словарь американских идиом. — СПб., Изд-во "Лань". . 1997.

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