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Related to ruin: Ruim
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go to wrack and ruin

To fall into severe or total decay, degradation, or ruination, as from disuse or lack of upkeep. ("Wrack," a now-archaic word meaning wreckage or destruction, is also often spelled "rack.") It greatly pains me that my grandfather's estate has been left to go to wrack and ruin. If only we'd been able to afford for someone to look after it all these years. The neighbor's property has really gone to wrack and ruin lately. I'm thinking about filing a complaint with the neighborhood association!
See also: and, ruin, wrack

go to rack and ruin

 and go to wrack and ruin
to become ruined. (The words rack and wrack mean "wreckage" and are found only in this expression.) That lovely old house on the corner is going to go to rack and ruin. My lawn is going to wrack and ruin.
See also: and, rack, ruin

*in ruins

in a state of destruction. (*Typically: be ~; lay ~; leave something ~.) The enemy army left the cities they attacked in ruins. The crops laid in ruins after the flood.
See also: ruin

lie in ruins

to exist in a state of ruin, such as a destroyed city, building, scheme, plan, etc. The entire city lay in ruins. My garden lay in ruins after the cows got in and trampled everything.
See also: lie, ruin

ruin of someone or something

the cause of destruction; a failure. Your bad judgment will be the ruin of this company! The greedy politicians were the ruin of the old empire.
See also: of, ruin

wrack and ruin

Cliché complete destruction or ruin. They went back after the fire and saw the wrack and ruin that used to be their house. Drinking brought him nothing but wrack and ruin.
See also: and, ruin, wrack

go to rack/wrack and ruin

if a building goes to rack and ruin, its condition becomes very bad because no one is taking care of it She's let that house go to rack and ruin since Clive died.
See also: and, rack, ruin

rack and ruin, go to

Also, go to wrack and ruin. Become decayed, decline or fall apart, as in After the founder's death the business went to rack and ruin. These expressions are emphatic redundancies, since rack and wrack (which are actually variants of the same word) mean "destruction" or "ruin." [Mid-1500s]
See also: and, rack

rack and ruin

Completely destroyed. “Rack” is a variant of “wrack,” meaning “wreck.” Accordingly, something (or someone) that has gone to rack and ruin is totally devastated.
See also: and, rack, ruin
References in classic literature ?
They said that no good could come of such an expedition, for the ruins were haunted by the spirits of the dead who had once inhabited them.
Well-worn pathways, molded by padded paws, led through the cavernous windows or doorways of a few of the ruins we passed, and once we saw the savage face of a great, black-maned lion scowling down upon us from a shattered stone balcony.
Opposite it, upon either bank of the river, are tumbled piles of ruins overgrown with vegetation.
We are not going to follow the worthy old stockbroker through those last pangs and agonies of ruin through which he passed before his commercial demise befell.
They conceal something; they exaggerate chances of good luck; hide away the real state of affairs; say that things are flourishing when they are hopeless, keep a smiling face (a dreary smile it is) upon the verge of bankruptcy--are ready to lay hold of any pretext for delay or of any money, so as to stave off the inevitable ruin a few days longer.
When the great crash came--the announcement of ruin, and the departure from Russell Square, and the declaration that all was over between her and George--all over between her and love, her and happiness, her and faith in the world--a brutal letter from John Osborne told her in a few curt lines that her father's conduct had been of such a nature that all engagements between the families were at an end--when the final award came, it did not shock her so much as her parents, as her mother rather expected (for John Sedley himself was entirely prostrate in the ruins of his own affairs and shattered honour).
If Amelia could have heard the comments regarding her which were made in the circle from which her father's ruin had just driven her, she would have seen what her own crimes were, and how entirely her character was jeopardised.
The thought of their ruin affected him not a little.
Our laborer can do nothing but get drunk like a pig, and when he's drunk he ruins everything you give him.
It is surely,' said Mr Garland, 'in the ruin where they live.
Leaving the spot with slow and cautious steps, and skirting the ruin for a few paces, he came at length to a door.
The aspect of the place in the dusk was singularly desolate: blackened trees, blackened, desolate ruins, and down the hill the sheets of the flooded river, red-tinged with the weed.
Pools of salt-water were still standing amidst the ruins of the houses, and children, making boats with old tables and chairs, appeared as happy as their parents were miserable.
presented a grand pile of ruins, in the midst of which door-cases and masses of timber stood up, as if floating in a stream.
The human race is, and always has been, ruin-minded,' wrote Rose Macaulay in Pleasure of Ruins (1953).