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[suhb-plot] /ˈsʌbˌplɒt/
a secondary or subordinate plot, as in a play, novel, or other literary work; underplot.
Compare counterplot (def 2).
1915-20; sub- + plot Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for subplot
  • There's also a moving subplot of dislocation and downward mobility in the author's own family.
  • Humor, if there was any, was relegated to the subplot or to an eleven-o'clock number.
  • Before long, however, a distinctly human subplot emerged.
  • There's hunting in the subplot, but it's an anti-hunting story.
  • Now please find a subplot in which you play a role as something other than shrieking pastel window dressing.
  • Other than that laughable subplot, the episode was first-rate.
  • There's a subplot that gets hardly any dialogue in the film, yet has an emotional pain and elegance.
  • Locate the predetermined subplot, subplot center pins are inserted and flagged.
  • There will be four replications of forage in the whole plot and three harvest dates in the subplot factor.
  • For each plot, a two-meter diameter subplot was defined at the center of each plot.
British Dictionary definitions for subplot


a subordinate or auxiliary plot in a novel, play, film, etc
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for subplot

also sub-plot, 1812 in literature, from sub- + plot (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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