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final nail in the coffin

An event, decision, action, etc., that seals, confirms, or ultimately leads to the failure of a situation or event that has already begun to fail. The candidate's uncouth comments toward the lower class were the final nail in the coffin of an already foundering campaign.
See also: coffin, final, nail

another nail in (one's) coffin

Another negative event that contributes to one's downfall or to something's failure. Aw man, our rival's new product just came out to rave reviews. There's another nail in our coffin. If my parents find out that I failed my exam, it will be another nail in my coffin, and they may never let me go out again!
See also: another, coffin, nail

(another) nail in (someone's or something's) coffin

Fig. something that will harm or destroy someone or something. (Alludes to the sealing of a coffin with nails.) Every word of criticism that Bob said about the boss was another nail in his coffin. Losing their biggest customer was the final nail in the company's coffin.
See also: coffin, nail

(a) nail in the coffin of something

also (a) nail in something's coffin
an action that will cause something to end This report on the effects of smoking is another nail in the coffin of the tobacco industry. We thought the firings would put the final nail in the union's coffin, but in fact, the union has grown in size and importance.
See also: coffin, nail, of

another nail in the coffin

  also the final nail in the coffin
an event which causes the failure of something that had already started to fail (usually + of ) I think that argument was the final nail in the coffin of our friendship.
See also: another, coffin, nail

nail in one's coffin

Something that might hasten or contribute to one's death, as in Every cigarette you smoke is another nail in your coffin. This expression, alluding to fastening down a coffin lid, is today almost always used for a harmful habit such as tobacco use (giving rise to the slang term coffin nail for a cigar or cigarette). The idea was first expressed in an ode by Pindar (the pseudonym of John Wolcot) in 1792: "Care to our coffin adds a nail, no doubt."
See also: coffin, nail

coffin nail

1. and coffin tack n. a cigarette. (Coffin nail is very old.) You still smoking them coffin nails? Every coffin tack you smoke takes a little off the end of your life.
2. n. a drink of liquor. How about another coffin nail?
See also: coffin, nail

coffin tack

See also: coffin, tack

coffin varnish

n. inferior liquor. You want some more of this coffin varnish?
See also: coffin, varnish


(ˈkɔfnæ dɑdʒɚ)
n. a heavy smoker. I just hate these damn coffin-dodgers who smoke right outside the door!