- Her death should serve as a warning to other young people.
- A single example serves to illustrate what I mean.
- The judge said the punishment would serve as a warning to others.
- The attack was unsuccessful and served only to alert the enemy.
* * *
[HAVE AN EFFECT] [Intransitive] formal | to have a particular effect or result (serve as, serve to do sth) .
[HAVE PARTICULAR RESULT] ~ as sth | to have a particular effect or result.
.... LDOCE, OALD
- She ushered me into the front room, which served as her office.
- I really do not think that an inquiry would serve any useful purpose.
- Their brief visit has served to underline the deep differences between the two countries.
- The old drawing room serves her as both sitting room and study.
3 [VERB] V as/for n, V n, V to-inf, V n as/for n
If something serves as a particular thing or serves a particular purpose, it performs a particular function, which is often not its intended function.