The word "make" is usually used as a verb. It means to create something.

simplepastpast participle
  • Sophia is making dinner.
  • Our neighbor is making noise.
  • Those kids are making a mess.
  • That company makes computers.
  • Maria made a dress for her daughter.
  • Congress will make some new laws next year.
  • Steven Spielberg has made many movies.
  • Have you ever made bread?


She’s making bread with her daughter.

There are also many other, varied meanings for "make."

  • How much do you make every year? (make = earn)
  • I’m sorry, I can’t make the party. (make = come)
  • They didn’t make it to the airport on time. (make = arrive)
  • Try not to make a big deal out of this. (Don’t create a problem.)
  • The flowers really made her day. (She was very happy to receive flowers.)
  • The people who own that company have it made. (have it made = to be very successful)
  • The police made the man give up the gun. (make = force)
  • Jim and Ashley probably aren’t going to make it as a married couple. (make it = succeed)
  • The flowers didn’t make it through the cold weather. (make it = survive)
  • Everyone admires a self-made man or woman. (self-made = to become successful without help from parents or some other benefactor)
  • Can you make out the license plate on that car? (make out = see)
  • A couple of teenagers were making out in the back seat of the car. (make out = kiss)
  • How did you make out at the racetrack? (make out = to do well)

Sometimes the word "make" is a noun:

  • What’s the make and model of the car you drive? (make = company name)
  • A stamp shows the make on the bottom of the vase.
  • Tony is always on the make. (on the make = looking for an advantage or opportunity)

Note: This is one of those words that you must learn how to use in many different applications. For more examples, go to the Purple Level.)

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This page was first published on October 12, 2012. It was last updated on October 24, 2015.