Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “shambles”

shambles

noun [S]     /ˈʃæm.bl̩z/ informal
a state of confusion, bad organization, or untidiness, or something that is in this state: After the party, the house was a total/complete shambles. Our economy is in a shambles. The way these files are arranged is the biggest shambles I've ever seen.Dirt and untidiness
(Definition of shambles noun from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
Focus on the pronunciation of shambles

Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Dirt & untidiness, but you might be interested in these topics from the Clean, dirty and cleaning topic area:

More definitions for “shambles”

Definitions of “shambles” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

closeness

the quality of knowing someone very well, liking them a lot, and wanting to spend a lot of time together

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More