make an example of

idiom
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of make an example of

: to punish (a person who has done something wrong) as a way of warning other people not to do the same thing
  • Although it was only his first offense, the judge decided to make an example of him and sentence him to prison.

Word by Word Definitions

make play
  1. : behave, act

  2. : to begin or seem to begin (an action)

  3. : to cause to happen to or be experienced by someone

  1. : the manner or style in which a thing is constructed

  2. : brand

  3. : the physical, mental, or moral constitution of a person

example play
  1. : one that serves as a pattern to be imitated or not to be imitated

  2. : a punishment inflicted on someone as a warning to others

  3. : one that is representative of all of a group or type

  1. : to serve as an example of

  2. : to be or set an example to


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