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 ?
"They have a number of observations that could be indicative of [ancient] life." If the new findings were in Earth rocks, he adds, "people would say 'you've got intriguing evidence, but you haven't proved it yet.'"
The possibilities she envisions for constructing a psychological portrait of Shakespeare himself is equally intriguing. If, in the foundation chapters, she asks implicitly why Shakespeare would have been immune from the psychological profile outlined by so many actors, in chapter three ("Richard III: Shakespeare's 'False Glass'") she hypothesizes that John Shakespeare's personal weakness and social decline, the death of Shakespeare's sister, and his socially formidable mother were the early influences that set William on the psychological path to playing.
The story is energetic, fast-paced and provides intriguing action.
The technique employed to find these galaxies, McMahon adds, is almost as intriguing as the team's results.
It also boasts an open courtyard and such intriguing architectural features as winding passages and a moatlike main entrance.
But it's intriguing, he adds, that so many of the galaxies reside in pairs or groups and that a substantial number appear distorted, as if they were undergoing violent interactions with their neighbors.
Hubble will serve as a scout for the Galileo spacecraft, scoping out intriguing features for the craft to investigate during its 2-year Jovian mission.
That's an intriguing number, Bottke notes, because it's close to the actual percentage of large, paired craters on Earth.
"That's an intriguing design strategy, one that can show us how nature self assembles a complex material.
Looking back over the record of past tremors, a seismologist has discerned an apparent pattern in the way Earth releases energy through great quakes - an intriguing discovery that could open new avenues for predicting seismic shocks and for studying the way Earth's plates move.
The team discovered that 17 meteorites that fell to Earth between 1855 and 1895 formed an intriguing pattern -- a broad line in the northern hemisphere that extends for several thousand kilometers.
The study revealed several intriguing, star-like entities that glowed brightly in red light but dimly in blue--characteristics of distant quasars, notes McMahon, of the University of Cambridge in England.