love interest

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love interest (plural love interests)

  1. (film, literature) One who is of interest as a (potential) partner in love.
    Synonyms: see Thesaurus:lover
    • 2012, Barbara R. Cohl, “What Unhappy Couples Can Teach Us”, in Success for Modern Day Relationships: Working with Dating, Engaged, and Married Couples, Lanham, Md.; Plymouth, Devon: Jason Aronson, →ISBN, page 82:
      Many people are involved in relationships in which they do not know how their love interest feels about them. [] They may also fear knowing the truth, which may be that their love interest isn't truly interested enough in them to make a commitment to the relationship.
    • 2015, H. Colleen Sinclair; Irene Hanson Frieze, “Initial Courtship Behavior and Stalking: How Should We Draw the Line?”, in Roland D. Maiuro, editor, Perspectives on Stalking: Victims, Perpetrators, and Cyberstalking, New York, N.Y.: Springer Publishing Company, →ISBN, page 61:
      Items from the "Love Styles" scale (Grote & Frieze, 1994) and the Hatfield and Rapson "Passionate Love" scale (Hatfield & Sprecher, 1986) were used to assess the type of love felt for the other person. One love style measured was eros, or passionate love (Lee, 1976). [] Items were: "I was physically attracted to my love interest"; "I felt we had the right physical chemistry between us"; "Just seeing my love interest excited me"; "I felt that I knew and really understood my love interest"; []
    • 2018 July 25, A. A. Dowd, “Fallout may be the Most Breathlessly Intense Mission: Impossible Adventure Yet”, in The A.V. Club[1], archived from the original on 31 July 2018:
      Naturally, Fallout also plays to [Tom] Cruise’s waning appeal as a romantic leading man, supplying him with no less than three potential love interests.
  2. A romantic relationship; a romance.
    1. (film, literature) A romantic plot or subplot in a film or book.
      • 1875 July, “the London Hermit” [pseudonym], “Essays and Sketches. On Love in Fiction.”, in Dublin University Magazine. A Literary and Political Journal, volume LXXXVI, number DXI, Dublin: George Herbert, []; London: Hurst & Blackett; Melbourne, Vic.: George Robertson, OCLC 949553349, page 113, column 1:
        Some of the greatest and most widely-appreciated literary achievements have been wholly or mainly independent of love-interest or love-inspiration. Religious fervour, zeal for liberty, admiration of abstract virtue, philanthropy, desire to search the heart of man, and contemplation of the beauties and splendours of the outward world,—all these prove to be motives as capable of firing and exalting the imagination as the more directly personal stimulus of love.
      • 1915 September, Henry Brinsley, “Latest News from the Literary Trenches”, in Frank Crowninshield, editor, Vanity Fair, volume 5, number 1, New York, N.Y.: Vanity Fair Publishing Company, OCLC 423870134, page 94, column 1:
        "The Hand of Peril" is subtitled by its author, Mr. Arthur Stringer, "a novel of adventure," whereas I should label it a six-cylinder detective story. [] Incidentally, the ligament that holds these six morsels together is, of course, a "love-interest" between the detective and the chief criminal's putative daughter and assistant.
      • 1926 December, [Arthur Hornblow, Sr.], “Mr. Hornblow Goes to the Play”, in F. E. Allardt, editor, Theatre Magazine: For the Lovers of the Stage and the Screen, volume XLIV, number 309, New York, N.Y.: Theatre Magazine Company, OCLC 297404477, page 72, column 2:
        The love interest is supplied by the Colonel's grandson and the daughter of the inventor of a horseless wagon.


  • tenderoni (younger love interest) (slang)


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