nail in the coffin


Also found in: Acronyms.

nail in the coffin

An event, decision, action, etc., that can or will lead to the failure or cessation of something. The candidate's uncouth comment about the lower class was the final nail in the coffin. That class action lawsuit could be a nail in the coffin of a company that has already seen its fair share of controversy.
See also: coffin, nail

a nail in the coffin

an action or event regarded as likely to have a detrimental or destructive effect on a situation, enterprise, or person.
1981 R. Lancaster Plant Hunting in Nepal A major nail in the coffin of the plant hunter, so some people believe, is the growing importance placed on plant conservation in the wild.
See also: coffin, nail
References in periodicals archive ?
The new drug bill is most likely the final nail in the coffin to ensure there can never be a national LTC program for everyone.
Another specialist in avian aerodynamics, Matthew Evans of the University of Stirling in Scotland, pronounces the test results "the first nail in the coffin" for bird aeronautics based on delta-wing models.
Jaskot has nonetheless put another nail in the coffin of Leon Krier's extraordinary attempt to exonerate the Nazi monuments by removing them from their political context.
I think the global credential could be another nail in the coffin of our rightfully proud profession.
"I think it will be the final nail in the coffin, so to speak."
"This bill is just one more nail in the coffin of family life," she said.
Called "another nail in the coffin of financial privacy" by Financial Privacy Report Publisher Mike Ketcher, the new rules would force anyone sending more than $750 abroad to provide identification to the financial institution wiring the money and have the transaction reported to the Treasury Department.
The water increase, Strasburg said, "is another nail in the coffin that is hurting not-for-profits the most."
In contrast to the conventional view of blackface minstrelsy as the nail in the coffin of antebellum racial stasis, Brown sees it--rightly, I think--as an arena in which ripping social transformation was registered and even activated.
to mothball its Thunder Bay division could turn out to be the last nail in the coffin for several area sawmills.
Whitfield's book indicates that, in killing Till, two white southerners only put another nail in the coffin of the very thing they were trying to keep alive.
He said long march will prove to be a last nail in the coffin of government and midterm elections will take place due to the long march.
Leading pension experts said the re-emergence of a sizeable black hole marked a nail in the coffin for generous schemes and predicted the end of final salary pensions in the private sector.
The fact that it was a Labour Government that introduced them is perhaps the ultimate irony and nail in the coffin for the kind of left wing radicalism that used to dominate university campuses.
Defender Senderos was axed for Sunday's defeat at Manchester United which put the final nail in the coffin of the Gunners' title challenge.