Talk:deus ex machina

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I always thought this meant "God is the machine". Is it plausible to interperet it this way?

Hmm, not really, to be honest. Your problem here is "ex". This means "out (of)", so also "from" and similar concepts; never "is". -- 00:17, 22 August 2005 (UTC)
Whoops, that was me. --Wytukaze 00:19, 22 August 2005 (UTC)


Is it really appropriate to list film references in a dictionary?

Hmmm. Nope. Please sign your entries on talk pages with ~~~~. --Connel MacKenzie T C 22:47, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

Text removed:

  1. (Television, capitalized) The name of the ship that Joel Hodgson uses to escape from the Satellite of Love on the television program Mystery Science Theater 3000.
  2. (Motion pictures, capitalized) The ultimate power in the machine world in The Matrix Revolutions, the third motion picture of The Matrix series.

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Rfv-sense: a god from the machine. Has it ever been used in English with this literal meaning? I know that the literal translation is mentioned in discussion of the term. DCDuring TALK 16:00, 25 October 2009 (UTC)

I note this sense dates from the original entry, which did not include an etymology. Pingku 17:11, 25 October 2009 (UTC)
It still deserves a chance. If someone has heard it used literally or can imagine it, they may have a good idea how to find the citations. It might just be uncommon or used in some specific context. DCDuring TALK 17:21, 25 October 2009 (UTC)
In The Matrix Revolutions, one of the machine characters is called Deus Ex Machina, which AFAICT puns on both the literal and the dramatical meanings of the phrase.  (u):Raifʻhār (t):Doremítzwr﴿ 02:14, 28 October 2009 (UTC)
I'd have to look for a specific quote, but I've come across this literal meaning often in discussions of Classical theater. It might be worth adding a context tag or two. --EncycloPetey 03:18, 1 November 2009 (UTC)
  • 1920, D. H. Lawrence, Women in Love,
    He found his eternal and his infinite in the pure machine-principle of perfect co-ordination into one pure, complex, infinitely repeated motion, like the spinning of a wheel; but a productive spinning, as the revolving of the universe may be called a productive spinning, a productive repetition through eternity, to infinity. And this is the Godmotion, this productive repetition ad infinitum. And Gerald was the God of the machine, Deus ex Machina. And the whole productive will of man was the Godhead.

--Pingku 06:06, 17 November 2009 (UTC)

I don't think this applies as attestation of the disputed sense. According to the explanatory notes to the book "Cambridge edition of the works of D.H. Lawrence, Women in Love", ed. David Farmer et al, p. 556, "deus ex machina" is used here to mean "providential interposition", which is same as the current sense #2. --Hekaheka 19:11, 1 December 2009 (UTC)
Fair enough. At least they recognised it as ambiguous - which in itself means we can't use it. Pingku 17:34, 5 December 2009 (UTC)

Fails. Mglovesfun (talk) 21:54, 3 February 2010 (UTC)