Definition of deus ex machina noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary


deus ex machina

BrE BrE//ˌdeɪʊs eks ˈmækɪnə//
; NAmE NAmE//ˌdeɪʊs eks ˈmækɪnə//
[singular] (literary)
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an unexpected power or event that saves a situation that seems without hope, especially in a play or novel Word Originlate 17th cent.: modern Latin, translation of Greek theos ek mēkhanēs, ‘god from the machinery’. In Greek theatre, actors representing gods were suspended above the stage, the denouement of the play being brought about by their intervention.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: deus ex machina