Intrigue

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Intrigue

 

in literature, a complicated and intense interweaving of events as a method of structuring the action or plot in novels (mostly in adventure novels) and in drama. It develops out of the sharp clash between the main characters’ interests and their purposeful, often secret struggle. An example is the intrigue over the letter about the guardianship in F. M. Dostoevsky’s novel A Raw Youth. The peripeteia involving the letter also reveals the “tragedy of the underground” and the “ethical duality” of the protagonists.

Intrigue

See also Conspiracy.
Borgias
15th-century family who stopped at nothing to gain power. [Ital. Hist.: Plumb, 59]
Ems dispatch
Bismarck’s purposely provocative memo on Spanish succession; sparked Franco-Prussian war (1870). [Ger. Hist.: NCE, 866]
Machiavelli, Nicolò
(1469–1527) author of book extolling political cunning. [Ital. Hist.: The Prince]
Mannon, Lavinia
undoes adulterous mother by brainwashing brother. [Am. Lit.: Mourning Becomes Electra]
Mission Impossible
team of investigators with Byzantine modus operandi. [TV: “Mission Impossible” in Terrace, II, 100–101]
Paolino
has cohort woo his covertly wed wife. [Ital. Opera: Cimarosa, The Secret Marriage, Westerman, 63]
Phormio
slick lawyer finagles on behalf of two men. [Rom. Lit.: Phormio]
Ruritania
imaginary pre-WWI kingdom, rife with political machinations. [Br. Lit.: Prisoner of Zenda]
X Y Z Affair
thinly disguised extortion aroused anti-French feelings (1797–1798). [Am. Hist.: Jameson, 564]
References in periodicals archive ?
Confused herself and attracted to others' confusion, her Sarah is self-aware enough to understand that getting involved with Alex is not a good thing, but fatally (actually, more like a post-feminist fatale-ly) intrigued by her power to push his vulnerable on and off buttons.
Nothing is done halfway; Meg kind of scares me in the way you want to be scared by somebody you're working with and intrigues me in the way you want to be intrigued.
Intrigued by the idea that bionites might have unique nonlinear optical properties -- such that they could prove useful in fiberoptics or microelectronics -- Mendelson brewed a web in potassium dihydrophosphate.
The unsophisticated Elma is intrigued by the Shakespeare-spouting, alcoholic Dr.
Sending out bursts of radio waves up to 600 times a second, millisecond pulsars have intrigued astronomers since a discovery four years ago that some reside at the heart of dense amalgams of Milky Way stars.
Gwen Foss, who spent nearly a decade as a ``Dominoid'' for Domino's Pizza, was so intrigued by the slang of the business that she compiled a glossary of pizza jargon.