Word: denouement

Pronunciation: day-noo-MAH

Part of Speech: noun

Definition: the final part of a play, movie, or narrative in which the strands of the plot are drawn together and matters are explained or resolved

Source: Oxford Dictionaries


Today’s vocabulary post is a special one because it’s my last Word of the Week! This segment has been really fun to write and I’ll certainly miss it, but with all the major updates I’m planning for my blog, I won’t have room for it anymore. So with that in mind, I picked out one final word from the 100 most beautiful words in English that would be most fitting for my last vocabulary entry. Here’s to the “denouement” of my Word of the Week!

A “denouement” is the final part of a story in which the plot is tied together and the conflict is resolved. The word arose in the mid 18th century and is originally a French noun meaning “outcome”. This noun derives from the verb dénouer, meaning “to unravel”.

“Denouement” is a word that every fiction writer should know, as it’s an important part of any plot. After all the action has risen and fallen and the climax has reached its end, the “denouement” is the final part of the story when everything comes together: every remaining strand of the conflict is resolved and the story reaches its conclusion. Note that aside from its literary definition, “denouement” can also work in real-world contexts meaning “the climax of a chain of events, usually when something is decided or made clear”. Whether you use it to define the conclusions in your stories or simply keep it in mind when outlining your plots, “denouement” is a key word to have in your vocabulary!

Thanks for reading my Word of the Week segment! I hope you’ve enjoyed it!

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