settle a score

(redirected from settle old scores)
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settle a score (with someone)

To get vengeance (on someone) for a past wrong or grievance; to punish someone for causing one harm or misfortune in the past. The former champion entered the competition looking to settle a score with the young player who dethroned him in the previous tournament. After five years in hiding from the law, Hofstadter decided it was time to return to town and settle a score.
See also: score, settle

settle a score

Also, settle or wipe out an old score or scores . Get even, avenge a grievance or an injury. For example, Wendy settled an old score with Bill when she made him wait for half an hour in the rain . These expressions, dating from the mid-1800s to early 1900s, all use score in the sense of "an account" or "bill." Also see pay off, def. 3.
See also: score, settle

settle a score

or

settle an old score

COMMON If someone settles a score or settles an old score, they take revenge for something that someone has done to them in the past. Phillips insists he's not interested in settling a score against the team that fired him a couple of months ago. Waters had only been out of jail three weeks when he and two friends went to settle an old score with a man he had met in prison. Note: You can talk about people or groups being involved in score-settling or the settling of scores. What is happening now is score-settling and there is little hope of an end to it. What we are witnessing here is the settling of scores.
See also: score, settle

settle (or pay) a (or the) score

take revenge on someone for something damaging that they have done in the past.
See also: score, settle

settle a ˈscore/an acˈcount (with somebody)

,

settle an old ˈscore

hurt or punish somebody who has harmed or cheated you in the past; get revenge: I’ve got a score to settle with him after the terrible things he said about my girlfriend.Before he left the school, he wanted to settle an old score with one of his classmates. OPPOSITE: call it quits
See also: account, score, settle
References in periodicals archive ?
Many teams return year after year to settle old scores, meet old friends and make new ones.
Others say he just enjoys the attention and now uses his books to rewrite the history of his life and crimes to settle old scores.
Series creator Simon is a former Sun reporter, and several onetime colleagues have accused him of using the media theme as an excuse to settle old scores.
I'll probably find some important jobs to do, Like mowing the lawn or cleaning the loo,I appreciate how a people may cheer on its side, Struggling hard to recover its long lost pride, But let's be honest we're not going to war, Just through the vehicle of soccer hope to settle old scores, The world may unite under a huge soccer banner, Into this temporary dream I must throw my spanner,Look around at the world and you must not forget, That at every turn the peace faces threat, For death and destruction are waiting in the wings, While in Japan and Korea the football fans sing.
More interested in the interminable infighting to settle old scores than being an opposition.
WHEN even "nice" John Major explodes in fury at the mention of Rupert Murdoch's name and suggests a cross-party alliance to attack him, you realise in the final volume of Chris Mullin's diaries that it seems some MPs have been biding their time to settle old scores with the newspaper tycoon.
PLAYERS battled it out to settle old scores in a football match that dates back hundreds of years.
Large armies of hamadryas baboons battle on the plains of Ethiopia to steal females and settle old scores, while Japanese macaques beat the cold by lounging in thermal springs.
Janice urges Madge not to mary a man she's only known for five minutes and the Oracle's armwrestling match provides a chance to settle old scores.
Looking for all the world like a deeply bitter man determined to settle old scores, he described Brown as "Stalinist", "ruthless" and "insulting" in his treatment of senior colleagues.
Earlier in the week, bigmouth Grace had pleaded with viewers to let her back into the main house - bragging she would settle old scores with her former rival.
NBC may be tiding in to settle old scores with Mexico's No.
Saddam accused the US government of using the attacks as an excuse to settle old scores with Muslim countries.
And, because the are desperate to settle old scores with southern yobs, they will stay out of trouble at tomorrow's Scotland-Holland game.
The game had been billed as the chance to settle old scores with the Germans - forever England's bogey team at major tournaments - but the passionate supporters were not given much to shout about.