Make a scene

verb phrase

To exhibit anger, indignation, fiery temper, hysterics, etc, in a public outburst: I asked her to be quiet and not make a scene/ Why don’t these pay cable services make a public stink about the Time Inc-Manhattan Cable monopoly?/ ”I never made a big stink about it,” says Righetti (entry form 1804+, variant 1812+)
Also, create a scene; make an uproar. Make a public disturbance or excited emotional display. For example, Joan made a scene when the restaurant lost her dinner reservation, or Ted made an uproar over losing his luggage. Make a scene was first recorded in 1831; the variant employs uproar in the sense of “a noisy commotion,” a usage first recorded in 1548.


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  • Make a splash

    verb phrase To produce a strong and usually favorable impression; be very conspicuous: That’s the book that made such a big splash a couple of years ago (1820+)

  • Make a stab at

    Try to do something, as in I don’t know the answer but I’ll make a stab at it. This expression derives from stab in the sense of “a vigorous thrust.” [ Late 1800s ] Also see: make a pass at, def. 2.

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