shuffle off this mortal coil

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From Hamlet by William Shakespeare, see mortal coil.


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shuffle off this mortal coil (third-person singular simple present shuffles off this mortal coil, present participle shuffling off this mortal coil, simple past and past participle shuffled off this mortal coil)

  1. (euphemistic, idiomatic) To die; to divest oneself of one's mortal body.
    Synonyms: see Thesaurus:die
    • c. 1599–1602 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Hamlet, Prince of Denmarke”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies [] (First Folio), London: [] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act III, scene i], page 265, column 2:
      For in that ſleepe of death, what dreames may come, / When we haue ſhuffel'd off this mortall coile, / Muſt giue vs pawſe.
    • 2011 April 19, Sumit Paul-Choudhury, “Digital legacy: The fate of your online soul”, in NewScientist[1]:
      But when you and I shuffle off this mortal coil, formal remembrances won’t be the only way we are remembered.
    • 2018, Tim Flannery, Europe: A Natural History, page 81:
      Handsome, with a Freud-like beard and piercing eyes, it was also said that he had perfected the death stare. Whenever he required the skeleton of some exotic beast to compare with his fossil bones, he would visit Basel Zoo and stare at the appropriate animal, which would soon thereafter shuffle off its mortal coil.