To abandon one at one's wedding ceremony after deciding, at the last minute, not to get married. How dare you leave me at the altar? If you were having second thoughts, you had plenty of time to tell me without humiliating me in front of all our family and friends.My heart just breaks for Shelly—I can't believe Mark left her at the altar.See also: altar, leave
left at the altar
Having been left by one's prospective spouse at or just before the wedding ceremony. I'm very hesitant to even consider marriage again after having been left at the altar.My heart just breaks for Shelly—I can't believe she got left at the altar.See also: altar, leftSee also:
v. phr. 1. To decide not to marry someone in the last minute; jilt. Ed left poor Susan at the altar. 2. To overlook and skip for promotion; not fulfill deserved expectation. Once again I didn't get my promotion and was left at the altar.