down the rat hole

rathole

[rat-hohl]
noun
1.
a hole made by a rat, as into a room, barn, etc.: The first chore in the old building is to plug up the ratholes.
2.
the burrow or shelter of a rat.
3.
any small and uncomfortable room, office, apartment, etc., especially one that is dirty or disordered: He lives in a rathole near the docks.
Idioms
4.
down the rathole, for a worthless purpose or purposes: seeing your inheritance disappear down the rathole.

Origin:
1805–15; rat + hole

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Slang Dictionary

rathole definition


  1. n.
    a run-down place; a dumpor a joint. : I refuse to live in this rathole any longer.
  2. n.
    a bottomless pit. (Typically with throw and down as in the examples.) : Why do they keep throwing money down that rathole?
Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions by Richard A. Spears.Fourth Edition.
Copyright 2007. Published by McGraw-Hill Education.
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