a punishment or bad experience that teaches you something
lesson in: I needed a lesson in humility and I got it.
The second goal was a lesson in how not to defend a free kick.
learn a lesson: I hope you’ve learnt a lesson from this, young man!
learn your lesson: People get into debt at such a young age that they have learnt their lesson by the time they’re 23.
teach someone a lesson (=punish someone): That girl needs teaching a lesson.
let that be a lesson to you: Let that be a lesson to you not to play with matches!
Synonyms and related words