learn one's lesson

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

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
References in classic literature ?
He therefore put his geography-book under his pillow, because he had heard that was a very good thing to do when one wants to learn one's lesson; but one cannot, however, rely upon it entirely.
Money, my dear; money will do anything--except making one learn one's lessons."
We have all heard sayings such as "live and learn" and "learn one's lesson." But it's easier to apply these cliches when children make mistakes or adults have their attitudes catch up with them.