- 1The physical destruction or disintegration of something or the state of disintegrating or being destroyed: a large white house falling into gentle ruinMore example sentences
- The dozens of sports that set down this weekend left a wake of destruction and ruin.
- In addition to the physical ruin, there was the collapse of the ideology which had been so prominent.
- After the destruction and ruin of the war years, and the climate of nationalism which preceded them, many hoped for a new model of political co-operation in Europe.
- 1.1 [count noun] The remains of a building, typically an old one that has suffered much damage or disintegration: the ruins of the castle the church is a ruin nowMore example sentences
- The ruins of the castle remain atop the hill but provide little protection from the relentless mistral, which constantly whips through its now-exposed cavity.
- Alexander the Great was unsuccessful in his aims to capture the hilltop fortress here, the ruins of which remain to be explored.
- The ruins of the apartment buildings were quickly bulldozed after the 1999 bombings.
- 1.2The disastrous disintegration of someone’s life: the ruin and heartbreak wrought by alcohol, divorce, and violenceMore example sentences
- Because such non-moderate behavior could lead to death or ruin, such a risk should not be taken lightly.
- Even so, I did not leave the young, brown-haired man in complete despair and ruin.
- Like so many others afflicted with the condition, he seems constantly to seek a way to drink that will not bring trouble and ruin.
- 1.3The complete loss of one’s money and other assets: the financial cost could mean ruinMore example sentences
downfall, collapse, defeat, overthrow, undoing, fall, failure, breakdown, break-up, disintegration, devastation, ruination; Waterloo• rare labefactionbankruptcy, insolvency, penury, poverty, destitution, impoverishment, indigence, beggary, financial failure; disaster, catastrophe, calamity
- He said today that he had only avoided such ruin after being left money following the death of his 103-year-old mother.
- Now comes the news that her shifty lawyer father has only 48 hours to raise a lot of money or face financial ruin and imprisonment.
- Unfortunately her formal education came to a stop in 1839 as a result of her father's financial ruin and social disgrace.
- 1.4Something that causes the disintegration of a person’s life or the complete loss of their assets: they don’t know how to say no, and that’s been their ruinMore example sentences
- Ñusta fell in love with this man, but that was her ruin.
- It was his intemperance which made him deaf to the appeals of Haemon, and which led him to disregard till it was too late the warnings of Teiresias; it was his intemperance which was his ruin.
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- 1 [with object] Reduce (a building or place) to a state of decay, collapse, or disintegration: (as adjective ruined) a ruined castleMore example sentences
destroy, devastate, lay waste, leave in ruins, wreak havoc on, ravage, leave desolate; raze, demolish, blast, wreck, wipe out, flatten, level, crush• archaic wastederelict, in ruins, gone to rack and ruin, dilapidated, ruinous, tumbledown, ramshackle, broken-down, decrepit, in disrepair, falling to pieces, falling apart, crumbling, decaying, disintegrating; neglected, uncared-for• informal shamblyNorth American • informal shacky• literary blasted
- The central hub of Bondville is the harbour overlooked by fishing cottages and guest houses as well as the great ruined fortress of Portland Castle.
- It notes that most people do not have access to safe water, power failures are frequent and the country's landscape still features ruined buildings.
- Pigeons carry 60 very nasty diseases as well as ruining our buildings and dirtying our pavements with their droppings.
- 1.1Cause great and usually irreparable damage or harm to; have a disastrous effect on: a noisy motorway has ruined village lifeMore example sentences
wreck, destroy, devastate, wreak havoc on, reduce to nothing, damage, spoil, mar, injure, blast, blight, smash, shatter, dash, torpedo, scotch, make a mess of, mess up; sabotage, poison• informal louse up, screw up, foul up, put the kibosh on, banjax, do for, blow a hole in, nix, queer• vulgar slang fuck up• archaic bring to naughtdestroyed, in ruins, in pieces, in ashes, falling down about one's ears; over, finished, at an end
- When someone is talking it just ruins the effect.
- He orders the young man not to look at him either because as client or director this would ruin the effect he wants to achieve.
- What drives them to subvert science, lie about the sources of the harm done, ruin countless lives?
- 1.2Reduce to a state of poverty: they were ruined by the highest interest rates this centuryMore example sentences
- He was much in demand for occasional music but died in poverty, ruined by his attempts to find the philosopher's stone.
- Dreverhaven seemingly hinders him at every turn, undermining his successes out of spite, trying to break his will and ruin him financially.
- Braddock had all his money tied up in stocks and the crash left him ruined.
- In a state of complete disorder or disintegration: the economy was in ruinsMore example sentences
derelict, ruined, gone to rack and ruin, in disrepair, falling to pieces, falling apart, dilapidated, tumbledown, ramshackle, broken-down, decrepit, decaying, ruinous; neglected, uncared-fordestroyed, ruined, in pieces, in ashes, falling down about one's ears; over, finished, at an end
- Built in the late 1400s, this Norman tower house was in ruins when Hurley started his labour of love.
- As of early June, the town was still in ruins, and no economy activity had resumed.
- A little girl's Christmas is in ruins after burglars broke into a house and stole her presents.
Middle English (in the sense 'collapse of a building'): from Old French ruine, from Latin ruina, from ruere 'to fall'.