One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
verb[WITH OBJECT]mete something out
1Dispense or allot justice, a punishment, or harsh treatment.‘punishments meted out to soldiers who violated army regulations’
dispense, hand out, apportion, distribute, issue, deal out, dole out, measure out, divide out, divide up, parcel out, share out, split up, give out, portion out, dish out, allocate, allot, bestow, assign, administerView synonyms
- ‘Severe punishments will be meted out on violators, particularly those who abuse the internet to download and spread ‘poisonous and harmful’ information.’
- ‘So not only am I not sure who filed what complaint against whom, but I won't know if any punishment is meted out at all.’
- ‘Certainly it was a shocking and upsetting moment when his punishment was meted out to him with so little justice, especially when he is told that he must become a Christian.’
- ‘In many of the informants' recollections of bathroom incidents, the punishment was meted out without regard to the students' obvious efforts to comply with school rules of requesting permission.’
- ‘Much the same treatment was meted out to the illustrious society ladies among whom she networked so assiduously.’
- ‘Severe punishments are meted out to violators.’
- ‘He did not say what punishments had been meted out to other offenders.’
- ‘A forfeit, on the other hand, means that the audience was less than impressed with the scene and an appropriate punishment is meted out.’
- ‘That corporal punishments were meted out to workers, including women, was the common complaint of the workers whom we met at the general meeting of the union members on March 6, 2001.’
- ‘While the Government, the police particularly, have lamented about increasing road carnage resulting from overloading, nothing seems to be solved because no punishment is meted out to the culprits as they corruptly get away with it.’
- ‘On the occasions that punishment has been meted out, it is generally mild.’
- ‘No punishments have been meted out to anyone as yet but an investigation is going on.’
- ‘The trio states that such treatment was meted out even against mentally ill inmates.’
- ‘And above all else, a General should see that justice is meted out.’
- ‘Thus our Constitution makes the fundamental decision to sacrifice efficiency in the realm of law enforcement by guaranteeing that no punishment can be meted out in the absence of virtual certainty of individual guilt.’
- ‘But… I will promise that justice will be meted out.’
- ‘Traffic officer Roger Manser said today the same treatment would be meted out to other motorists who equipped their cars with the £40 kits.’
- ‘They were not interrogated, and no justice was meted out to them.’
- ‘There is urgent need to link and sensitise the police, medical fraternity and the judiciary so that deterring punishments are meted out to the offenders, he said.’
- ‘Needless to say, no such treatment has been meted out to the alleged fraudsters.’
- 1.1 (in biblical use) measure out.‘with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again’
- ‘It is recorded in Jeremiah that everyone will be meted out retribution for his own sins.’
- ‘It brings to mind an old warning: ‘With what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.’’
Old English metan ‘measure’, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch meten and German messen ‘to measure’, from an Indo-European root shared by Latin meditari ‘meditate’, Greek medesthai ‘care for’, also by meet.
nounusually metes and bounds
A boundary or boundary stone.
- ‘In my opinion any part of a building which is defined by metes and bounds is ‘premises’ in respect of which a licence can be granted, provided it is in the justices' opinion structurally adapted for the sale of liquor.’’
Late Middle English: from Old French, from Latin meta ‘boundary, goal’.
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