|Origin:||punir, from Latin punire, from poena; PAIN1|
to make someone suffer because they have done something wrong or broken the law [↪ punishment, punitive]:
Smacking is not an acceptable way of punishing a child.
He promised to punish severely any officials found guilty of electoral fraud.
punish somebody for (doing) something
It's unfair to punish a whole class for the actions of one or two students.
They deserve to be punished for putting passengers at risk.
I felt I was being punished for what my mother had done.
punish somebody by doing something
My parents decided to punish me by withdrawing financial support.
punish somebody with something
The House voted to punish the senator with a formal reprimand.
2 [usually passive]
if a crime is punished in a particular way, anyone who is guilty of it is made to suffer in that way [↪ punishment, punitive]
In some societies, theft is punished by death.
to make yourself feel guilty or bad for something you have done:
If you fail, don't punish yourself.