a state or condition of mental uncertainty or excitement, as in awaiting a decision or outcome, usually accompanied by a degree of apprehension or anxiety.
a state of mental indecision.
undecided or doubtful condition, as of affairs: For a few days matters hung in suspense.
the state or condition of being suspended.

1375–1425; late Middle English < Medieval Latin suspēnsum deferment, suspension, uncertainty, noun use of neuter of Latin suspēnsus hung up, doubtful, in suspense (past participle of suspendere to hang up, leave undecided), equivalent to sus- sus- + pēnsus (pend-, stem of pendere (translation) to hang (see pend) + -tus past participle suffix, with dt > s)

suspenseful, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
suspense (səˈspɛns)
1.  the condition of being insecure or uncertain: the matter of the succession remained in suspense for many years
2.  mental uncertainty; anxiety: their father's illness kept them in a state of suspense
3.  excitement felt at the approach of the climax: a play of terrifying suspense
4.  the condition of being suspended
[C15: from Medieval Latin suspensum delay, from Latin suspendere to hang up; see suspend]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1402, "not being executed, unfulfilled" (of legal matters), from Anglo-Fr. suspens (in en suspens "in abeyance," 1306), from O.Fr. suspens "act of suspending," from L. suspensus, pp. of suspendere (see suspend). Meaning "state of mental uncertainty" (1440) is from legal
meaning of "not rendered, not paid, not carried out" (e.g. suspended sentence). As a genre of novels, stories, etc., attested from 1952.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
These findings make us realize good storytelling doesn't rely on lingering
There was never any suspense you simply did not check the public facts before
Then suspense builds when the dinosaurs mistakenly wake up, due to the wrong
  medication that counteracts the deep sleep.
Not only that, they have more years of being oriented to the suspense of
  waiting for things to pay off much, much later.
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