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smooth over somethingalso smooth something over
to make problems seem less serious He's on a three-day visit to smooth over a crisis. They failed to agree on the main issue, and he certainly wasn't going to ignore it or try to smooth it over.
Rid of obstructions or difficulties, as in We tried to smooth things over between the families before the wedding but did not succeed . [Late 1600s]
1. To fill or coat something so as to create a smooth surface: The builder smoothed over the seams in the sheetrock with plaster. For a healthy complexion, smooth some cold cream over your face before bed.
2. To make some strained relationship more friendly or amiable: The ambassador smoothed over relations with France. The two players almost got into a fight before the coach smoothed things over between them.