down-at-the-heels

or down-at-the-heel

[ doun-uh t-thuh-heelz or doun-uh t-thuh-heel ]
/ ˈdaʊn ət ðəˈhilz or ˈdaʊn ət ðəˈhil /

adjective

of a shabby, run-down appearance; seedy: He is rapidly becoming a down-at-heel drifter and a drunk.
Also down-at-heel, down-at-heels.

Origin of down-at-the-heels

First recorded in 1695–1705

Definition for down-at-heel (2 of 2)

Origin of heel

1
before 850; Middle English; Old English hēl(a); cognate with Dutch hiel, Old Norse hǣll. See hock1
Related formsheel·less, adjective
Can be confusedheal heel he'll
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for down-at-heel

British Dictionary definitions for down-at-heel (1 of 2)

heel

1
/ (hiːl) /

noun

verb

Derived Formsheelless, adjective

Word Origin for heel

Old English hēla; related to Old Norse hǣll, Old Frisian hêl

British Dictionary definitions for down-at-heel (2 of 2)

heel

2
/ (hiːl) /

verb

(of a vessel) to lean over; list

noun

inclined position from the verticalthe boat is at ten degrees of heel

Word Origin for heel

Old English hieldan; related to Old Norse hallr inclined, Old High German helden to bow
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Medicine definitions for down-at-heel

heel

[ hēl ]

n.

The rounded posterior portion of the foot under and behind the ankle.
A similar anatomical part, such as the rounded base of the palm.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with down-at-heel

heel


see Achilles' heel; at someone's heels; bring to heel; cool one's heels; dig in (one's heels); drag one's feet (heels); head over heels; kick up one's heels; on the heels of; out at the elbows (heels); set back on one's heels; show one's heels; take to one's heels; to heel; turn on one's heel.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.