a shadow of (oneself)

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a shadow of (oneself)

Someone or something that has changed dramatically to become decreased in vivacity in some way, often following negative circumstances or some traumatic event. Tom's been nothing but a shadow of himself since that accident, his bubbly, outgoing persona replaced by gloom and seriousness. The mass emigration of workers from the country during the recession has left it a mere shadow of itself.
See also: of, shadow
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

*shadow of oneself

 and *a shadow of itself; *a shadow of one's former self
Fig. someone or something that is not as strong, healthy, full, or lively as before. (*Typically: be ~; become ~.) The sick man was a shadow of his former self. The abandoned mansion was merely a shadow of its old self.
See also: of, shadow
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

shadow of one's self

Also, shadow of one's former or old self . A person, group, or thing that has become weaker in physical or mental capacities or in power or authority. For example, After that long battle with the flu, he was just a shadow of his old self, or This new administration is but a shadow of itself, or The revised constitution is a shadow of its former self. The use of shadow for an emaciated person dates from the late 1500s, and by about 1800 the word began to be used for other kinds of attenuation.
See also: of, shadow
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Now, Bergh described the company as a "shadow of itself."
But today, the attention on Lisa has waned; no one remembers Lisa again and the road rehabilitated is a shadow of itself, making communal life hellish and crippling economic activities.
The Rattray Park, built at an estimated cost of US$4.5 million seems to be in distress as the Park is deteriorating, making the project a pale shadow of itself, as patronage is decreasing.
Newsweek is now a shadow of itself. That decline hurts.
Gecheo said the popular Safari Sevens, which used to attract thousands of fans, has become a pale shadow of itself, with the event making losses in the last five years.
The Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz is a shadow of itself. It's a party in slumber; an outfit looking for moorings; an organisation lost in the mist of adversity; a family limited company with no family in sight; a team with no captain and an entity groping in the dark for a future.
Project Lies as carried out by the morally bankrupt leave campaigners is what has reduced this country to a shadow of itself and, horrifyingly, the worst is yet to come.
The two have reduced a once robust cadre-based party, which used to take huge pride in its inner party democracy, to a pale shadow of itself. Even Modi's Cabinet is filled with cardboard cutout leaders who are unable to exercise any real authority.
O Briain's prose is delicious but without Bramall's graphic interpretation this book would be but a shadow of itself.
Though a shadow of itself in the Soviet era when it enjoyed a monopoly on power, the Communist Party is also hoping a younger less orthodox contender may be able to revive its fortunes and appeal to younger voters.
Anyway, two years later, Bryce needs a shave; his love life is non-existent and his once top-flight business is a shadow of itself. Then one day he gets a phone call from his estranged ex-girlfriend, an Interpol agent played by the French actress Elodie Yung: She needs him to escort a notorious hitman (Jackson, of course) to The Hague, where he is to testify against a really, really horrible war criminal (Gary Oldman, of course).
After searching for a place in resort town Cartagena (now a sorry shadow of itself), Neruda moved into the property in 1945 and lived here with Delia del Carril.
PDP-Laban has become a shadow of itself, until Duterte came along; but Duterte will have to fire up the imagination of people, beyond shooting down criminals.
And while "Idol" became no more than a shadow of itself at the end, it was still one of the few ratings bright spots on Fox's schedule, as younger viewers become rarer and rarer and the network struggles to avoid winding up at the bottom of the Big Four network pile.
"We easily could have gone for a seventh season but if I'd have said 'We haven't got Maggie', it would have been a shadow of itself," he told the newspaper.