The Plot Thickens

Meaning:

If ‘the plot thickens,’ that means a situation or story has become more interesting in some way due to newly introduced information.

Example: My brother told me that he’s been on a strict diet for the past couple months. However, I just found a hidden stash of junk food in his room! Is he lying about dieting, and if so, why? The plot thickens.
Synonyms / Related Phrases:
1. More than meets the eye

The Origin Of ‘The Plot Thickens’

What is a plot and how does it thicken? Well, the word ‘plot’ can refer to the story, or narrative of something. For example, movies have plots in them; they have a sequence of events that unfold throughout the film and this is the overall ‘plot’ of the film. As the story is told, things can become more complicated as new developments take place, thus making ‘the plot,’ or story, thicker.

Anyway, the first known use of this phrase is believed to be from the 17th century. The phrase appears in a play called The Rehearsal, 1671, by George Villiers. A part from it reads: 

“Ay, now the Plot thickens very much upon us.”

That means this phrase is nearly 350 years old, at least!


Example Sentence(s)

  • When Rachel visited her friend Jessica, she heard kids playing in another room, so she thought to herself: “I don’t remember Jessica ever saying she had kids. Hmm, the plot thickens.” Shortly after, she realized that Jessica was simply babysitting for someone.

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