tatter(redirected from tattering)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.
In a ruined condition. (Used literally or figuratively.) You can't wear this jacket to dinner—it's in tatters! The company was in tatters after the founding members resigned.
be in tatters
1. Of a fabric, typically clothing, to be torn or worn into strips. You can't wear this jacket to dinner—it's in tatters!
2. By extension, to be in a ruined condition. The company was in tatters after the founding members resigned. Our relationship is in tatters. I have no idea how we could fix it.
Fig. in torn pieces of cloth. The poor man's clothes hung in tatters. The flag was in tatters after the storm.
be in ˈtatters
1 (of clothes) be torn in many places: He got into a fight and came home with his clothes in tatters.
2 (of a plan, an idea, a person’s feelings, etc.) be ruined or badly damaged: She’s failed her exams, and now all her hopes of becoming a doctor are in tatters. ♢ His career and his reputation are both in tatters after the scandal.