interesting

interesting, engrossing, absorbing, intriguing mean having a quality or qualities that secure attention and hold it for a length of time.
Interesting implies a power in a person or thing to awaken such a mental or emotional reaction involving attention as curiosity, sympathy, a desire to know or understand, or enthusiasm, but unless the adjective is qualified or there is a fuller explanation in the context, the degree or the cause of interest is not clear
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after a month of visiting Mark decided that there was not one interesting human creature in the whole parish— Mackenzie

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Jane seemed to me to be increasingly interesting; she was acquiring new subtleties, complexities, and comprehensions— Rose Macaulay

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I see that many people find the world dreary ... some find it interestingBenson

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As applied to a book, a play, or a narrative the word usually means entertaining, diverting (compare verbs at AMUSE) exciting, stimulating, or provocative (compare verbs at PROVOKE) but if the context provides no real clue as to the precise implication, the word may fail to hit the mark.
Engrossing (see also MONOPOLIZE) suggests the power to grip the attention so as to exclude every-thing else, but it may or may not imply a power to please, divert, or entertain, and it refers almost always to things rather than persons; thus, an engrossing book may seize the whole attention from such dissimilar causes as that it requires deep study or serious reflection or that it is challenging or provocative
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the engrossing nature of his task made the time pass quickly

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the conditions were ideal—not too much money, engrossing work to be done, and a sense of purpose and progress in the world— Whitehead

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synonymy books in which differences are analyzed, engrossing as they may have been to the active party, the analyst, offer to the passive party, the reader, nothing but boredom— Fowler

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Absorbing does not differ materially from engrossing, but its underlying notion is not the same, for it suggests in the thing that holds one's attention a power to draw one in, as if by suction; thus, a pursuit may be engrossing, but not absorbing, when it occupies one's attention to the exclusion of everything else; a book may be absorbing, rather than engrossing, when its attraction is strong enough to draw one away from attention to one's surroundings
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he loved the woman with a love as absorbing as the hatred he later felt for all women— Anderson

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the difficult and absorbing question of how poetry and the other arts at their best, though human creations, put us into relation with the universe of reality— A lexander

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Intriguing, sometimes used in the sense of interesting, more specifically applies to something that attracts attention by arousing one's curiosity, by baffling one's understanding, or by leading one on
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an intriguing smile

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one facet of one of the most intriguing and baffling mysteries of the Cold WarDrew Middleton

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there is an intriguing unknowingness about The Age of Reason— Hardwick

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Analogous words: stimulating, exciting, provoking, quickening (see PROVOKE): stirring, rousing, awakening (see STIR vb): thrilling, electrifying (see THRILL vb): amusing, diverting, entertaining (see AMUSE): inspiring, animating (seeINFORM vb)
Antonyms: boring
Contrasted words: *dull, humdrum, dreary, monotonous, stodgy, pedestrian: *irksome, tedious, tiresome, wearisome

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Interesting — In ter*est*ing, a. Engaging the attention; exciting, or adapted to excite, interest, curiosity, or emotion; as, an interesting story; interesting news. Cowper. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • interesting — (adj.) 1711, that concerns, important, from INTEREST (Cf. interest) (v.). Meaning so as to excite interest is from 1768. Related: Interestingly. Euphemistic phrase interesting condition, etc., pregnant is from 1748 …   Etymology dictionary

  • interesting — interesting; un·interesting; …   English syllables

  • interesting — index attractive, moving (evoking emotion), provocative, sapid Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • interesting — [adj] appealing, entertaining absorbing, affecting, alluring, amusing, arresting, attractive, beautiful, captivating, charismatic, compelling, curious, delightful, elegant, enchanting, engaging, engrossing, enthralling, entrancing, exceptional,… …   New thesaurus

  • interesting — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ arousing curiosity or interest. DERIVATIVES interestingly adverb interestingness noun …   English terms dictionary

  • interesting — [in′trəstiŋ] adj. exciting curiosity or attention; of interest interestingly adv …   English World dictionary

  • interesting — adj. 1) highly interesting 2) interesting for; to 3) interesting to + inf. (he s interesting to watch = it s interesting to watch him) 4) interesting that + clause (it s interesting that the incident was not reported in the newspapers) * * * [… …   Combinatory dictionary

  • interesting — in|terest|ing W2S1 [ˈıntrıstıŋ] adj if something is interesting, you give it your attention because it seems unusual or exciting or provides information that you did not know about ≠ uninteresting, boring ↑boring ▪ That s an interesting question …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • interesting — adj. VERBS ▪ appear, be, look, seem, sound ▪ become, get ▪ prove ▪ …   Collocations dictionary

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