picaresque

[pik-uh-resk]
adjective
1.
pertaining to, characteristic of, or characterized by a form of prose fiction, originally developed in Spain, in which the adventures of an engagingly roguish hero are described in a series of usually humorous or satiric episodes that often depict, in realistic detail, the everyday life of the common people: picaresque novel; picaresque hero.
2.
of, pertaining to, or resembling rogues.

Origin:
1800–10; < Spanish picaresco. See picaro, -esque

unpicaresque, adjective

picaresque, picturesque (see synonym study at picturesque).


2. prankish, rascally, devilish, raffish.
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World English Dictionary
picaresque (ˌpɪkəˈrɛsk)
 
adj
1.  of or relating to a type of fiction in which the hero, a rogue, goes through a series of episodic adventures. It originated in Spain in the 16th century
2.  of or involving rogues or picaroons
 
[C19: via French from Spanish picaresco, from pícaro a rogue]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

picaresque
1810, from Sp. picaresco "roguish," from picaro "rogue," possibly from picar "to pierce," from V.L. *piccare (see pike (2)). Originally in roman picaresque "rogue novel," the classic example being "Gil Blas."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Her characters are quixotic, picaresque heroes of the moral life.
His case is exceptional only for its picaresque twist.
Not many picaresque heroes find things so straightforward.
Its plot is picaresque and fabulous, slightly demented.
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