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an end in itself

This page is about the idiom an end in itself.

Meaning: If something is an end in itself, it's done for its own pleasure or benefit rather than for some other purpose like making money.

For example:

  • Billy says playing music in a band is an end in itself for him, but I think he does it to meet girls.

  • People used to think education was an end in itself, but these days kids study in order to make lots of money when they graduate.

Quick Quiz:

For Ari, music is an end in itself. She doesn't do it to

a. enjoy herself

b. entertain people

c. make money

Idiom of the Day

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Contributor: Matt Errey