[rat-l-trap] /ˈræt lˌtræp/

a shaky, object, as a rickety vehicle.
(informal) a broken-down old vehicle, esp an old car

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.


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


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