- 1[intransitive, transitive] to suddenly break into small pieces; to make something suddenly break into small pieces shatter (into something) He dropped the vase and it shattered into pieces on the floor. the sound of shattering glass shatter something (into something) The explosion shattered all the windows in the building.
- 2[transitive, intransitive] to destroy something completely, especially someone's feelings, hopes, or beliefs; to be destroyed in this way shatter something (into something) Anna's self-confidence had been completely shattered. Injury shattered his dreams of competing in the Olympics. Her experience of divorce shattered her illusions about love. shatter (into something) My whole world shattered into a million pieces.
- 3[transitive] shatter somebody to make someone feel extremely shocked and upset The unexpected death of their son shattered them.
NAmE//ˈʃæt̮ər//Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they shatter
he / she / it shatters
past simple shattered
-ing form shattering