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A tool is an instrument which, practically, intercedes between the workman and the work to be done, and which enables the workman (or woman) either to do what, by their natural endowments, they could not (for example, a metal chisel enabling the cutting of stone) or to do better what they could do themselves in but a poorer manner (for example spectacles to improve vision).

Many tools are themselves used to create other tools. An obvious example is the anvil which a smith uses to make plough-shares, rakes, hoes and the like which will then be used in agriculture.