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    #1

    meaning of "make up"

    Dear all,

    I'm reading The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters. At one scene, the landlady Frances and her mother were talking about their lodgers, who were a young couple. And it goes:

    ‘Didn’t they tell us that they’d been married for three years? Straight out of the War, I suppose. No children, though.’ Frances said.
    Her mother’s tone changed slightly. ‘No.’ And after a second, the one thought plainly having led to the next, she added, ‘Such a pity that the young women today all feel they must make up.’
    Frances reached for the book. ‘Isn’t it? And on a Sunday, too.’
    She felt her mother’s level gaze. ‘Don’t imagine that I can’t tell when you are making fun of me, Frances.’

    I can't be sure about what "make up" mean in this context. It seems it's unusual to "make up" on a Sunday. At first I thought she might be refering to "wear makeups", but then I don't understand how the thought of "no children" can lead to wear makeups. Can anybody help me understand what they were talking about here?

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    #2

    Re: meaning of "make up"

    Had the young couple been making love noisily and frequently - making up for lost time ​after the war?

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    #3

    Re: meaning of "make up"

    I'm not familiar with this story, but I guess it's set during or immediately after World War 2. What the writer means is: women felt they should do something to repay the men for taking the risks of war. What could they do? Offer their bodies. And Frances' mother thinks that it's a pity.

    The times the writer speaks of were long before my time, but I imagine it was considered not quite proper to think about or engage in sexual activity on a Sunday- even if you were married.

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