a slap on the wrist

This page is about the idiom a slap on the wrist.

Meaning: If someone gives you a slap on the wrist, they give you a mild punishment for making a mistake or doing something wrong.

For example:

  • The tribunal didn't think it was a serious offence, so they just gave him a slap on the wrist. All he got was a warning.

  • Some of our players got a slap on the wrist for getting to the training session late. The coach warned them not to be late again and then made them do twenty push-ups.

Quick Quiz:

The judge gave her a slap on the wrist by sentencing her to

a. thirty years in jail

b. execution in the electric chair

c. a few hours of community service

Idiom of the Day

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Contributor: Matt Errey