at an end—
1. said of smth. used up or exhausted:
- I must warn you that my patience is almost at an end.
2. be finished; be over:
- When a checkmate is obtained, the game is at an end.
at the end—
1. in the last part of smth.:
- I think the film’s a bit weak at the end.
2. in the farthest part of smth.:
- The tube is very short and closed at the end.
Note: The expression is not equivalent in meaning to the phrase in the end—
1. finally; ultimately:
- Three months were spent in the drafting of a document which in the end was rejected.
2. taking one thing with another; as things turn out:
- In the end, boys and girls don’t communicate the same way.