The action or process of creating one's own identity or character, or of attaining a position in society through one's own efforts. Also: the action of bringing something into existence through one's own actions.
In the 19th century, often with allusion to
Mid 17th century; earliest use found in Edward Burrough (1633–1663), Quaker activist and writer. From self- + making, in later use partly after self-made.
1Of a person. That attains wealth, status, etc., through personal effort or actions; in later use with implication of ongoing self-improvement.
2Of a thing: that makes or creates itself independently or automatically. Now somewhat rare.
Mid 17th century (in an earlier sense). From self- + making.