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[rat-l-trap] /ˈræt lˌtræp/
a shaky, rattling object, as a rickety vehicle.
Origin of rattletrap
1760-70; rattle1 + trap1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for rattletrap
  • Some rockfish are being caught in the same areas with rattletrap type lures.
  • For years the ore from these has been worked in an old rattletrap mill, and has produced many thousands of dollars.
British Dictionary definitions for rattletrap


(informal) a broken-down old vehicle, esp an old car
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
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Word Origin and History for rattletrap

1766, originally a noun, "knick-knacks, trifles, odds and ends," from rattle (adj.) + trap, perhaps in the sense in traps (n.2). Hence, "a shabby, rattling object," especially a rickety coach or other vehicle (1822). The adjectival sense of "rickety" is recorded from 1834.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for rattletrap



A ramshackle coach or other vehicle, esp an old car (1822+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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