scrape up an acquaintance


Make an effort to become familiar with someone, especially for one's own benefit. For example, He scraped up an acquaintance with the college president in hopes of getting his son admitted. This term uses scrape in the sense of “gather with difficulty” (also see under scare up). Originally put as scrape acquaintance, it was first recorded in 1600.

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.