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punish (someone or oneself) by (doing something)

To do something as a way of penalizing or disciplining someone or oneself. The boss has been punishing those who disagree with him by loading them with more work than they can handle. For breaking his diet over the holidays, Bob punished himself by only eating vegetables for two weeks straight.
See also: by, punish

punish (someone or oneself) for (something)

To penalize or discipline someone or oneself for some crime, wrong, mistake, or other transgression. Bob punished himself for breaking his diet over the holidays by only eating vegetables for two weeks straight. I feel like this heavy workload is the boss's way of punishing me for disagreeing with him during the meeting.
See also: for, punish

punish with (something)

1. To penalize or discipline someone or oneself with a particular action or outcome. A noun or pronoun is used between "punish" and "with." I feel like the boss has been punishing me with a heavy workload just because I disagreed with him in the meeting. You would have been punished with death if you committed that crime in my home country.
2. To handle something in a very rough, damaging manner. A noun or pronoun is used between "punish" and "with." You need to stop punishing your body with so much alcohol each weekend. I'm surprised my car lasted as long as it has, considered how much I've punished it with my daily commute.
See also: punish

take a punishing

1. To be thoroughly beaten or thrashed; to suffer rough treatment or abuse. My younger brother was always a shy, skinny kid who often took a punishing from schoolyard bullies. My feet have taken a punishing from hiking in these old sneakers.
2. To be soundly defeated or bested; to lose by a wide margin. Their team's inexperience showed on the pitch today, as they took a punishing from the powerful squad from New Zealand.
3. To suffer severe losses or setbacks. The stock market took a punishing over the weekend after fears of Greece's exit from the Eurozone. My efforts to get my PhD have taken a punishing over the last couple of years, but I'm still determined to see it through.
See also: punish, take
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

punish someone by something

to discipline someone by doing something. The headmaster punished the children by forcing them to go to bed early. She punished herself by not eating.
See also: by, punish

punish someone for something

to discipline someone for [doing] something. Someone will punish you for what you did. Please don't punish me for doing it. I'm sorry.
See also: for, punish

punish someone with something

to use something to discipline someone. The captain punished the sailor with the lash. Sally threatened to punish Timmy with a spanking.
See also: punish
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Amanda hopes the detention center will focus on helping the girls work through their problems rather than punishing them.
responsible for punishing offenders against the Poor Laws" (59); in this way, too, his work is contaminated by its self-service.
But even on this program the action takes place in a criminal courtroom, reminding us that justice is primarily a matter of identifying and punishing the guilty.
If we start punishing ideas, that which is criminal will depend (even more than it already does) on whether liberals or conservatives are in power in any given legislative year.
They help move enforcement agencies away from a "bean-counting" mindset that leads them to obsess about the number of enforcement actions and monetary penalties issued because they have no other definition of "success." They promote fairness by not punishing people who voluntarily reveal information they didn't have to find out about in the first place.
So what you have to do is artfully keep finding worse and worse methods of punishing them.
The speech does mention the word punish - but only in the context of punishing anti-abortion violence.
Better behaviors come from planning better behaviors; they do not come from punishing people for behaviors that don't conform to our ideas of what is appropriate.
Thus, in the summer of 1988, the organization began the production of its first annual report, aptly entitled Punishing a Nation.(30) In converting from interventions and issue-oriented research studies (which were not entirely displaced) to an annual report format, al-Haq was able to avoid radical and painful restructuring and instead merely adapt its documentation and research methods to a new format.
Another parent, Muhammad Khalid, said, "If fees are not cleared, why are you punishing the kids?
The Philippine National Police (PNP) must show an example by punishing its own men allegedly involved in crimes, Senator Grace Poe said on Thursday.
In order to check exploitation of the officials by the senior command and to discourage favouritism and nepotism in award of punishments, the new laws also empower the appellate authority to take suo moto notice of any irregularity committed by the punishing authority and to revise the original orders, he informed.
They give the example that punishing ex-president Musharraf could anger, if not the whole army, at least a powerful part of it, which could endanger the newly established democracy.
DAVID Haye has vowed to succeed where he claims the British justice system has failed - by sufficiently punishing Dereck Chisora.
Had he been a thief, punishing him was action of courts and not police.