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"Normans' ambition was to make of England a trilingual country."

What is the meaning of phrasal verb "make of."

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    Maybe, it could be paraphrased as "Normans' ambition was to make a trilingual country of England."
    – dan
    Feb 2, 2019 at 12:12
  • What @dan said. Including optional of in such constructions today would normally be seen as dated / poetic / pompous / stilted. Feb 2, 2019 at 14:23

1 Answer 1

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I suspect you mean, "the Normans".

This is an inversion. The standard version would be:

"The Normans' ambition was to make a trilingual country of England."

This can be compared with, "Janet's ambition was to make a teapot of clay."

So Janet wishes to convert clay into a teapot. The Normans want to convert England into a tri-lingual nation.

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