Author Topic: even in the remorseless dooms of antiquity, a god from the machine?"  (Read 2602 times)

Offline t k

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"O great crested grebe," he prayed, "maligned fowl, have I not expiated the wrong my sister did you; am I still to be an exile from the green places of my heart? Was there not, even in the remorseless dooms of antiquity, a god from the machine?" He prayed without hope. (from Scoop by Evelyn Waugh; a larger context is here; use ctrl-f to locate the sentence)

Please explain "a god from the machine".  Thanks.  --- tk

Offline Britta

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Re: even in the remorseless dooms of antiquity, a god from the machine?"
« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2016, 08:09:25 am »
Look up "deus ex machina". Wikipedia says "The term has evolved to mean a plot device whereby a seemingly unsolvable problem is suddenly and abruptly resolved by the inspired and unexpected intervention of some new event, character, ability or object."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deus_ex_machina
If it's not used by a native speaker it's not idiomatic. And idiom trumps grammar every time. Jack Wilkerson†