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English definition of “read (sb) the riot act”

read (sb) the riot act

to speak angrily to someone about something they have done and warn that person that they will be punished if it happens again : He'd put up with a lot of bad behaviour from his son and thought it was time to read him the riot act.
(Definition of read (sb) the riot act from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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