in the doldrums


Depressed; dull and listless. For example, Dean's in the doldrums for most of every winter. This expression alludes to the maritime doldrums, a belt of calms and light winds north of the equator in which sailing ships were often becalmed. [Early 1800s] Also see down in the dumps.

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