Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Torn into shreds; ragged.
  • adjective Having ragged clothes; dressed in tatters.
  • adjective Shabby or dilapidated.
  • adjective Disordered or disrupted.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Rent in tatters; torn; hanging in rags.
  • Dilapidated; showing gaps or breaks; jagged; broken.
  • Dressed in tatters or rags; ragged.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective rent in tatters, torn, hanging in rags; ragged
  • adjective dressed in tatters or rags; ragged
  • adjective obsolete dilapidated; showing gaps or breaks; jagged; broken
  • verb Simple past tense and past participle of tatter.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective ruined or disrupted
  • adjective worn to shreds; or wearing torn or ragged clothing

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English tatered, tatird, from tatter +‎ -ed. Originally it was derived from the noun, but later it was treated as a past participle implying a verb. Compare tatter.

Examples

  • And they denounce what they called the tattered shroud of mandatory celibacy.

    Letter From Priests' Lovers Reignites Celibacy Debate

  • He cited the recent example of a Columbia Heights Station escalator that bore what he described as a tattered banner referring to repair dates in 2009.

    Depending on escalators

  • An old black man in tattered overalls stepped out from the band of shade cast by the police van.

    Excerpt: A Beautiful Place to Die by Malla Nunn

  • It's like when he went to Beijing to cover the Olympics and wrote a column about how the government had cleared away the poor and tattered from the streets (or something along those lines, the memory blurs).

    A match made in... well, somewhere (Jack Bog's Blog)

  • For I have issued the fatwa, and the web of the Spider now hangs in tattered shreds, but before his death he knew this: that his life is fleeting, and we will last forever.

    The Parable of the Spider

  • And, like kids watching magicians in tattered top hats, audiences want to believe those myths.

    Vanessa Richmond: Willow Smith and America's Dirty Little Fame Secret

  • We could wind up with a country where nothing is manufactured but guns, and we'll be standing around in tattered loincloths, freezing and unshod next to our rusting out-of-gas SUV's clutching our empty black rifles.

    On Sotomayor and Your Guns

  • From the oak tree by the kitchen door, in tattered, weatherbeaten garments, hung the bodies of two men.

    War

  • We could wind up with a country where nothing is manufactured but guns, and we'll be standing around in tattered loincloths, freezing and unshod next to our rusting out-of-gas SUV's clutching our empty black rifles.

    On Sotomayor and Your Guns

  • They covered me in tattered fabrics, slid a bonnet around my head to shade my face and pulled me through the feathers towards my brother.

    Blackbird Pie « A Fly in Amber

Comments

New comments are temporarily disabled while we update our database.