deserve


deserve
deserve, merit, earn, rate mean to be or become worthy of something as recompense whether by way of reward or punishment.
Deserve implies a just claim which entitles one to something good or evil, usually on the ground of actions done or qualities shown; it does not necessarily imply that the claim has been won or recognized
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when at your hands did I deserve this scorn?— Shak.

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that he should be supported at the public expense as one who had deserved well of his country— Dickinson

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it is largely owing to his insight and enthusiasm, as well as to his editorial toil, that the Tudor translators have become recognized as they deserveT. S. Eliot

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Merit is so close a synonym of deserve that it is often used interchangeably with it without loss. Even so, slight differences in meaning may be detected. Merit, although it implies a just claim, seldom suggests that the claim has been urged by oneself or another, a connotation that is not essential to but may often be found in deserve; merit also more often implies qualities of character, of life, or of action that entitle one to reward or punishment
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give him the words of praise that he merits

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he merited a reproof, but he did not deserve dismissal

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a compliment... to the grandeur of the family, merited by the manner in which the family has sustained its grandeur— Dickens

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Earn may suggest a due correspondence between the efforts exerted or the time or energy spent and the recompense that ensues; it fundamentally implies a deserving or meriting as well as a getting and therefore may suggest a return in evil as well as in good
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"Indeed, he hath an excellent good name." "His excellence did earn it, ere he had it"— Shak.

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an active, ardent mind ... a generous spirit, and a body strong . . . had earned for him sure welcome— Wordsworth

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his devotion to self-interest has earned for him nothing but contempt

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Rate implies recognition of deserts or merits usually upon a carefully calculated basis, but it does not carry any suggestion of whether what is deserved or merited has been given
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he rates a promotion

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the magazine rates our support

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Analogous words: gain, win, *get: evaluate, value, *estimate: claim, *demand

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Deserve — De*serve (d[ e]*z[ e]rv ), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Deserved}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Deserving}.] [OF. deservir, desservir, to merit, L. deservire to serve zealously, be devoted to; de + servire to serve. See {Serve}.] 1. To earn by service; to be worthy… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • deserve — de*serve (d[ e]*z[ e]rv ), v. i. To be worthy of recompense; usually with ill or with well. [1913 Webster] One man may merit or deserve of another. South. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • deserve — early 13c., from O.Fr. deservir (Mod.Fr. desservir) deserve, be worthy of, earn, merit, from L. deservire serve well, from de completely (see DE (Cf. de )) + servire to serve (see SERVE (Cf. serve)). From be entitled to because of good s …   Etymology dictionary

  • deserve — [di zʉrv′] vt. deserved, deserving [ME deserven < OFr deservir, to deserve < L deservire, to serve diligently < de , intens. + servire, SERVE] to have a right to because of acts or qualities; be worthy of (reward, punishment, etc.);… …   English World dictionary

  • deserve — index earn Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • deserve — [v] be entitled to be given one’s due*, be in line for*, be worthy of, demand, earn, gain, get, get comeuppance*, get what is coming to one*, have it coming*, have the right to, justify, lay claim to, merit, procure, rate, warrant, win; concept… …   New thesaurus

  • deserve — ► VERB ▪ do something or show qualities worthy of (a reward or punishment as appropriate). DERIVATIVES deservedly adverb. ORIGIN Latin deservire serve well or zealously …   English terms dictionary

  • deserve — de|serve W3S2 [dıˈzə:v US ə:rv] v [T] [Date: 1200 1300; : Old French; Origin: Latin deservire to serve very keenly , from servire to serve ] 1.) to have earned something by good or bad actions or behaviour ▪ What have I done to deserve this?… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • deserve — verb (T) 1 to have earned something by good or bad actions or behaviour: You ve been working all morning I think you deserve a rest. | deserve to do sth: The team deserves to win. | deserve it: Yeah, I hit him but he deserved it. | get what you… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • deserve */*/ — UK [dɪˈzɜː(r)v] / US [dɪˈzɜrv] verb [transitive] Word forms deserve : present tense I/you/we/they deserve he/she/it deserves present participle deserving past tense deserved past participle deserved 1) if you deserve something, it is right that… …   English dictionary


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