Definition of a slap on the wrist in English:

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a slap on the wrist

A mild reprimand or punishment: the few perpetrators prosecuted only got a slap on the wrist
More example sentences
  • Why do students think they can always break the law and be let off with just a reprimand or a slap on the wrist?
  • The reprimand is a slap on the wrist; nothing, no pain, nothing.
  • Hacking into computer networks was long seen as little more than a prank, and punishment was typically a slap on the wrist.
reprimand, rebuke, reproof, scolding, admonition, admonishment, reproval
informal telling-off, rap over the knuckles, dressing-down
British informal ticking off, wigging
Australian/New Zealand informal serve
British vulgar slang bollocking
See parent entry: slap
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