mortal

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mere mortal

A human, and therefore capable of mistakes. The phrase emphasizes someone's humanity and fallibility. I have to make my expectations more realistic and realize that she's a mere mortal. Presidents are bound to make mistakes—they're mere mortals, just like the rest of us.
See also: mere, mortal

shuffle off this mortal coil

Euph. to die. (Often jocular or formal euphemism. Not often used in consoling someone.) Cousin Fred shuffled off this mortal coil after suffering a heart attack. When I shuffle off this mortal coil, I want to go out in stylebells, flowers, and a long, boring funeral.
See also: coil, mortal, off, shuffle, this

shuffle off this mortal coil

  (humorous)
to die
Usage notes: This phrase comes from the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare.
I really want to see the Coliseum before I shuffle off this mortal coil.
See lost in the shuffle
See also: coil, mortal, off, shuffle, this

shuffle off

1. Get rid of, act evasively, as in They've tried to shuffle off public inquiries about the safety of their planes. This usage, dating from about 1600, also appears in the oft-quoted shuffle off this mortal coil, from Shakespeare's Hamlet (3:1), where it means "become freed from the turmoil of life," that is, "die."
2. Move away reluctantly, dragging one's feet, as in The prisoners shuffled off to their work detail. [Late 1500s]
See also: off, shuffle

shuffle off

v.
1. To go with short sliding steps, without or barely lifting the feet: The sleepy children shuffled off to bed.
2. To leave; depart: Toward the end of the evening, the guests shuffled off one by one.
3. To rid oneself of something; dispose of or relocate something: I have not been able to shuffle off my embarrassment. The computer program automatically shuffles the outdated files off to another disk.
4. To evade or shirk something, such as a responsibility: He shuffled off his responsibilities and went to the beach. She shuffled her work off onto others because she wasn't feeling well.
See also: off, shuffle

shuffle off this mortal coil

Die. This phrase that appears in Hamlet combines the archaic meaning of two words. “Shuffle” meant “rid,” while “coil” meant “troubles.” As Shakespeare put it, “What dreams may come / When we have shuffled off this mortal coil / Must give us pause.”
See also: coil, mortal, off, shuffle, this
References in periodicals archive ?
Bernard's father after seeing the image of his mortally wounded son said he opposed its publication, saying it was disrespectful to his son's memory.
That's right: the industry where design can make or break a multibillion dollar company, cause the loss of thousands of jobs and mortally wound communities, was not even present.
In "The Sacred Fount", the only one of James' novels written in first person, the narrator's is hyperfocused on tapping into the "sacred fount" of another person, to the risk of calamity; in "The Wings of the Dove", a mortally ill American heiress is entangled in a scheme of love and betrayal between an English adventuress and her journalist lover.
His candidacy also co-opted and thus largely neutered the appeal of the People's Party, which had been mortally threatening Democratic hegemony in the South.
Literature has recruited this symbol in tales of meeting the devil at the crossroads at midnight or embracing the Faustian bargain to barter the soul in return for what is mortally desirable.
The crew of the leading boat attempted to pull out, but after the second volley all were mortally wounded.
Even though Chapman was mortally wounded his team credits him with saving their lives.
When Nelson was mortally wounded, Collingwood took control.
Its tragic drift is bookended by a pair of GWs: Bush, recognizably smug even in a few blotches of oil paint, and Washington, a la Gilbert Stuart but mortally disappointed.
All these men's missions stand out under this requirement--rescuing friends under intense fire while badly wounded themselves, picking up burning flares in a mortally damaged aircraft, throwing themselves on live grenades, returning to the fight against enemy aircraft even though low on fuel and facing superior numbers.
9 officers were mortally wounded from shots to the torso.
She faced overseeing the performances and social events of the Bayreuth Festival while her mortally ill father lay close by.
The men, one of them from Wales, were under siege by several hundred locals at a police station north of Basra when one of them was mortally wounded.
The meaning is clear enough, however: a mortally wounded man appeals for the mercy of God in the moments it takes him between his falling from his horse and his lying dead on the ground.
If I were a gay man, I'd be mortally offended at the slim pickin's on the beefcake buffet.