lesson

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learn (one's) lesson

To learn through painful experience not to do something, often something one had been warned about or knew might be risky. I told you that you'd feel awful if you drank that much wine. I hope you've learned your lesson. I certainly learned my lesson about buying something from a stranger online.
See also: learn, lesson

teach (one) a lesson

To punish or harm someone as a means of seeking retribution and to dissuade or prevent them from committing bad behavior in the future. After the CEO was found guilty, he was forced to repay $150 million in damages and will spend the next 10 years in jail. If that doesn't teach him a lesson, I don't know what will. A: "I heard Jeff crashed his new Porsche into a streetlight." B: "Well, that ought to teach him a lesson about constantly speeding in a residential area."
See also: lesson, teach

teach someone a lesson

to get even with someone for bad behavior. John tripped me, so I punched him. That ought to teach him a lesson. That taught me a lesson. I won't do it again.
See also: lesson, teach

learn one's lesson

Profit from experience, especially an unhappy one. For example, From now on she'd read the instructions first; she'd learned her lesson. Also see hard way.
See also: learn, lesson

read a lecture

Also, read a lesson. Issue a reprimand, as in Dad read us a lecture after the teacher phoned and complained. The first term dates from the late 1500s, the variant from the early 1600s. Also see read the riot act; teach a lesson.
See also: lecture, read

teach a lesson

Punish in order to prevent a recurrence of bad behavior. For example, Timmy set the wastebasket on fire; that should teach him a lesson about playing with matches . This term uses lesson in the sense of "a punishment or rebuke," a usage dating from the late 1500s. Also see learn one's lesson.
See also: lesson, teach

learn your ˈlesson

learn what to do or what not to do in the future because you have had a bad experience in the past: I used to carry a lot of money on me, until one day my bag was stolen. Since then, I’ve learned my lesson.
See also: learn, lesson

an ˈobject lesson

a practical example of what you should or should not do in a particular situation: It was an object lesson in how not to make a speech. He did absolutely everything wrong.An object lesson was a school lesson that used real objects as a way of teaching in a very direct and practical way.
See also: lesson, object

teach somebody a ˈlesson

(also ˈteach somebody (to do something)) learn from a punishment or because of an unpleasant experience, that you have done something wrong or made a mistake: He needs to be taught a lesson (= he should be punished).Losing all his money in a card game has taught him a lesson he’ll never forget.That’ll teach you! Perhaps you’ll be more careful in future!
See also: lesson, somebody, teach
References in classic literature ?
Now, my boys have studied all day, and Mac is still at his books, I've no doubt, while you have not had a lesson since you came, I suspect.
He seemed to have thrown himself back in his chair, tired out, and sat there with his eyes shut till the clock struck two, when he jumped up, put his books in his pocket, as if ready for another lesson, and taking little Tina who had fallen asleep on the sofa in his arms, he carried her quietly away.
At efening I shall gif a little lesson with much gladness, for look you, Mees Marsch, I haf this debt to pay.
He spoke so kindly, and opened Hans Andersons's fairy tales so invitingly before me, that I was more ashamed than ever, and went at my lesson in a neck-or-nothing style that seemed to amuse him immensely.
Never before and never again while Tom was at school did the Doctor strike a boy in lesson.
They had done their work for first lesson, and Tom was in a brown study, brooding, like a young William Tell, upon the wrongs of fags in general, and his own in particular.
Flashman laid wait, and caught Tom before second lesson, and receiving a point-blank "No" when told to fetch his hat, seized him and twisted his arm, and went through the other methods of torture in use.
This lesson I have tried to carry with me ever since.
I also learned a valuable lesson at Hampton by coming into contact with the best breeds of live stock and fowls.
During these two weeks I was taught a lesson which I shall never forget.
Judge Scott shook his head sadly at luncheon table, when his son narrated the lesson he had given White Fang.
As a result, having learned the lesson well, White Fang was hard put whenever he passed the cross-roads saloon.
And out of bed he jumped, and read in his book, and now all at once he knew his whole lesson.
It describes Japanese lesson study and the typical structured problem-solving research lesson that forms the basis for lesson study; and discusses how the collaborative planning process and the resulting research lessons, together with the post-lesson discussions, provided teachers and researchers with the opportunity to collaborate in the research process.
Activities include pony trekking around the outdoor paddocks; riding lessons (including lessons for disabled) and holiday ponies during the summer holidays, Riding lessons are on Saturday and Sunday from 9.