sub·​plot | \ ˈsəb-ˌplät How to pronounce subplot (audio) \

Definition of subplot

1 : a subordinate plot in fiction or drama
2 : a subdivision of an experimental plot of land

Examples of subplot in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Yet of all the subplots in that series, there was no moment more interesting than the Game 5 conversation between Warriors coach Steve Kerr and Durant that aired on TNT. Sam Amick, USA TODAY, "That's that: Kevin Durant's epic Game 3 should put an end to iso-ball chatter," 7 June 2018 This all made for an incredibly awkward subplot, as former head coach Rick Pitino now may want to reevaluate an unfortunate tattoo. Andrew Joseph, For The Win, "Rick Pitino has a tattoo commemorating Louisville's now-vacated 2013 national title," 20 Feb. 2018 By this time that compelling mother-daughter relationship has been ditched for a tangle of ambitious, increasingly elaborate subplots whose confusions may or may not be cleared up a few episodes down the line. Dorothy Rabinowitz, WSJ, "‘Black Earth Rising’ Review: Seeking Justice After Catastrophe," 24 Jan. 2019 The transcript threat One of the subplots here has been Democrats' push to release the transcript of Strzok's previous, closed-door testimony. Aaron Blake,, "7 key moments from FBI agent's Peter Strzok's wild House hearing," 12 July 2018 The charges of political mistaken identity form one of the longer-running subplots in the colorful annals of local government in the nation’s capital. Peter Jamison, Washington Post, "Is this D.C. politician benefiting from a case of mistaken identity?," 14 June 2018 But the dialogue, staging, and acting in this subplot were some of the weakest of the show. Darren Orf, Popular Mechanics, "'Star Trek: Discovery' Is All About Friendship and Death This Week," 8 Feb. 2019 So, don’t get caught up in all the imaginary subplots. John Cherwa,, "Racing! Secretariat and Citation top Triple Crown rankings," 9 June 2018 In perhaps the most heartwarming subplot, Tyler (Finn Wolfhard) befriends a lonely older man (Ron Cephas Jones) who has lost his beloved pug, Mabel. Katie Walsh, The Seattle Times, "Pups lift the doldrums of ‘Dog Days’," 7 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'subplot.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of subplot

1812, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

20 Apr 2019

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The first known use of subplot was in 1812

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English Language Learners Definition of subplot

: a plot that is related to but less important than the main plot of a story

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