One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The person second in importance to the protagonist in a drama.
- ‘In Agamemnon, there can be but little doubt that the protagonist impersonated only Clytemnestra, leaving the deuteragonist the briefer parts of the Herald, Cassandra, and Ægisthus, and to the tritagonist the Watchman and Agamemnon.’
- ‘Henry Drummond, the deuteragonist, or character second in importance in Inherit the Wind, can be considered the hero of the play.’
- ‘Nor does he confine himself to the great figures such as the Gracchi, Marius, Sulla, Cicero, Pompey, and Caesar; he is equally fond of portraying the characters of deuteragonists like Clodius, Curio, Lepidus, and Plancus.’
- ‘It is a wonderfully told tale, with a well drawn main character and an unforgettable deuteragonist.’
- ‘She learned at Cambridge that in Greek tragedy there was one protagonist, and one deuteragonist.’
- ‘In Elizabethan England, the public generally regarded playwrights and actors as reprobates and scapegraces; lords and ladies risked their reputations by hobnobbing with dramatists and deuteragonists.’
- ‘Mr. Voaden undoubtedly intended to depict a struggle, but the second contestant - the deuteragonist if that useful word had been naturalized in English - is not presented as an individual or group, but rather as the spirit of the country.’
- ‘A deuteragonist in that little drama, I had a moment of doubt.’
- ‘The deuteragonist could have played the nurse, Jason, and messenger, with the tritagonist playing the tutor, Creon, and Aegeus.’
- ‘Abulafia is also the nickname given by deuteragonist Jacopo Belbo to his home computer in Umberto Eco's Foucault's Pendulum.’
- ‘The first actor was the protagonist, the second the deuteragonist, and the third the tritagonist.’
- ‘The deuteragonist is a rather seedy individual who actually invented the hominids and is now on the run while trying to find a way to destroy his creation.’
- ‘As most plays called for three speaking actors, the protagonists probably chose their own second and third players - the deuteragonist and tritagonist.’
- ‘This is a typical response, when there's no cogent argument available to the deuteragonist.’
- ‘The photo is of Will Ferrell's great character Mugatu, deuteragonist of the definitive filmic treatment of the fashion world, Zoolander.’
- ‘To the Irishman, Flaherty, who served in the Palestine Police, East is Palestine, and not Malaya, which, naturally, for us Europeans is further east than India but which to Nabby Adams, the deuteragonist we meet on the very first page of the book, is no east at all.’
- ‘Henry Fleming, the youth who is the protagonist of this thrillingly realistic drama of war, has for deuteragonist Wilson, the loud young boaster.’
- ‘The second best actor was called the deuteragonist.’
- ‘The ‘subject’ under analysis is Nyasha, the anorexic, teenage deuteragonist of Tsitsi Dangarembga's 1988 novel Nervous Conditions.’
Mid 19th century: from Greek deuteragōnistēs, from deuteros ‘second’ + agōnistēs ‘actor’.
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