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Word of the Day
Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Definitions for potboiler

  1. a mediocre work of literature or art produced merely for financial gain.

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Citations for potboiler
Although it remains one of the most discussed works by Henry James, James himself soon dismissed it as "an inferior, a merely pictorial, subject and rather a shameless potboiler." Edited by John Auchard, The Portable Henry James, 2004
Discovered beneath the floorboards of an apartment in Paris where Proust once spent a summer in his youth, A Habit of the Knife is nothing more or less than a noir potboiler. Jeff VanderMeer, "A Brief Summary of Seven Lost Books," The Day Dali Died, 2003
Origin of potboiler
Potboiler entered English in the late 1800s. The expression to boil the pot meaning "to provide for one's subsistence" entered English at the beginning of the 1800s.
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