serve right

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serve someone right

[for an act or event] to punish someone fairly (for doing something). John copied off my test paper. It would serve him right if he fails the test. It'd serve John right if he got arrested.
See also: right, serve

serve you right

you deserve the punishment that you received After the way she treated him, it would serve her right if he left her.
Usage notes: often said with an attitude of pleasure because someone you do not like is suffering
See also: right, serve

serve somebody right

if something bad that happens serves someone right, they deserve it It would serve you right if your children never spoke to you again. And she didn't get the promotion she'd hoped for, which served her right for being so smug.
See also: right, serve

serve (someone) right

To be deserved under the circumstances: Punish him; it will serve him right for what he has done to you.
See also: right, serve
References in periodicals archive ?
Pour the water out of the bag and store the clean lettuce in the fridge or serve right away.
Davenport took the opening set in 27 minutes, breaking serve right at the start and again for 4-1.
Repeat with the remaining crepes and serve right away.
Pour the hot chocolate into a mug and serve right away with a spoonful of whipped cream.
The first set was nothing short of classic, even though it went with serve right until the 12th game.
We're serving a market that a lot of other logistics companies just don't have the established resources to serve right now," said Edwards.
Pour the sauce evenly over each portion and serve right away.