make up for

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make up for (one)

To act as a substitute for one. Brett can't make it, so you'll have to make up for him, if that's OK. I'd be willing to make up for Sarah while she's away.
See also: for, make, up

make up for (something)

To atone or act as compensation for some unfairness, misdeed, etc. Here, this should make up for all the money I owe you, and then some. Dad said he hoped this trip would make up for all the times he was away.
See also: for, make, up
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

make up for someone or something

1. to take the place of someone or something. John can't play in the game Saturday, but I think I can make up for him. Do you think that this cat can make up for the one that ran away?
2. to compensate for someone or something someone did. We all had to do extra work to make up for Harry, who was very tired from being out late the night before. We will certainly make up for what we failed to do.
See also: for, make, up
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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