make something of

Idioms & Phrases

make something of

  1. Render important or useful; improve. For example, Dad hoped Tim would make something of himself. [Late 1700s]

  2. Give undue importance to something, especially a problem or disagreement, as in Ann decided to make something of it when Bob said women's studies is not a real discipline. This usage sometimes is put as make something out of nothing, as in So what if Jim had coffee with your girlfrienddon't make something out of nothing. For an antonym, see make nothing of, def. 1.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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