Understanding the Idiom: "make interesting" - Meaning, Origins, and Usage

Idiom language: English

The idiom “make interesting” is a commonly used phrase in English that expresses the desire to make something more engaging, captivating, or appealing. It implies that the subject at hand may be lacking in excitement or interest and needs to be improved in some way. This idiom can be applied to various situations, from personal conversations to professional presentations.

Origins and Historical Context of the Idiom “make interesting”

The phrase “make interesting” is a commonly used idiom in the English language. It has been used for many years to describe something that captures one’s attention or piques their interest. The origins of this idiom are not clear, but it is believed to have originated from the early 19th century.

During this time, people were becoming more interested in literature and entertainment. As a result, writers and performers began using various techniques to make their works more engaging and appealing to audiences. This led to the development of new phrases and idioms, including “make interesting.”

Over time, the use of this idiom became widespread across different fields, such as journalism, advertising, and education. It was often used by writers and speakers to encourage their audience to pay attention or engage with their work.

Today, “make interesting” remains a popular phrase that is used in everyday conversations. It is often employed by individuals who want to add emphasis or excitement to what they are saying.

Usage and Variations of the Idiom “make interesting”

Usage Examples

  • “The author did an excellent job of making the characters in her novel interesting.”
  • “I always find it challenging to make my presentations interesting for my audience.”
  • “My teacher made history class so interesting that I started reading historical books on my own time.”

Variations and Synonyms

While “make interesting” is a commonly used phrase, there are many variations and synonyms that convey similar meanings. Here are some examples:

  • “Make captivating”
  • “Make compelling”
  • “Make intriguing”
  • “Make fascinating”

In addition to these variations, there are also different ways to modify the phrase depending on context. For example:

  • To describe something as particularly engaging: “This book is not just interesting – it’s downright mesmerizing!”
  • To express surprise at how engaging something is: “Wow, you really made that topic come alive – I never thought it could be so interesting!”

The versatility of this idiom makes it useful in many different settings. Whether you’re trying to impress your boss with a presentation or simply looking for ways to spice up your conversations with friends, knowing how to make things more interesting can be a valuable skill.

Synonyms, Antonyms, and Cultural Insights for the Idiom “make interesting”


  • spice up
  • liven up
  • brighten up
  • add interest to
  • fascinate
  • captivate
  • engross
  • intrigue
  • enthrall

These synonyms all convey the same basic meaning as “make interesting,” but each has its own nuances and connotations. For example, “spice up” implies adding a bit of excitement or variety, while “intrigue” suggests a sense of mystery or fascination.


  • bore
  • tire out
  • dull
  • sadden
  • wear out
  • depress
  • disinterest

On the other hand, these antonyms represent words that have opposite meanings to “make interesting.” They describe things that cause disinterest or boredom instead of excitement and engagement.

Cultural Insights:

Different cultures may have varying interpretations of what makes something interesting. In some cultures, humor is highly valued and can make even mundane topics more engaging. In others, storytelling is seen as an essential component of making information compelling.

Practical Exercises for the Idiom “make interesting”

Exercise 1: Write a short paragraph about a topic that you find boring. Use the idiom “make interesting” to describe how you would change it to make it more engaging. For example, if you find history boring, write about how you could make it interesting by focusing on personal stories or unusual facts.

Exercise 2: Watch a movie or read a book that you found dull in the past. Identify specific scenes or chapters where the author or director used techniques to “make it interesting”. Take notes on these techniques and try applying them to your own writing or storytelling.

Exercise 3: Practice using the idiom “make interesting” in conversation with friends or colleagues. Share an idea or story and ask for feedback on how you could make it more engaging. Encourage others to do the same and offer constructive criticism.

By practicing these exercises, you will become more confident in using the idiom “make interesting” effectively in both written and spoken communication. Remember, mastering idioms takes time and effort but can greatly improve your language skills!

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Using the Idiom “make interesting”

When using idioms in English, it’s important to understand their meaning and usage. The idiom “make interesting” is often used to describe something that becomes more engaging or captivating. However, there are some common mistakes that people make when using this idiom.

Mistake #1: Overusing the Idiom

One of the most common mistakes when using the idiom “make interesting” is overusing it. While this phrase can be useful in certain contexts, repeating it too often can make your writing or speech sound repetitive and dull. Instead, try to vary your language by using synonyms such as “captivate,” “intrigue,” or “fascinate.”

Mistake #2: Using it Incorrectly

Another mistake people make with this idiom is using it incorrectly. For example, saying “I will make my presentation interesting by adding pictures” may not be entirely accurate since pictures alone may not necessarily make a presentation more engaging. In situations like these, consider alternative phrases such as “enhance,” “enliven,” or even simply stating what you plan on doing without relying on an idiom.

  • Instead of saying: I will make my essay more interesting by adding quotes.
  • Say: I will enhance my essay by including relevant quotes from credible sources.
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