[ pik-uh-resk ]
Part of SpeechadjectiveOrigin + Etymology
early 19th century; Spanish; "pertaining to or dealing with rogues or knaves and their adventures," especially in literary productions, 1810; from picaresco "roguish," from picaro "rogue," a word of uncertain origin, possibly from picar "to pierce," from Vulgar Latin
adjectivepertaining to or characterized by a form of prose fiction originally developed in Spain in which the adventures of a roguish hero are described in a series of usually humorous or satiric episodes often depicting the everyday life of the common people
adjectiveA) In the picaresque novel Don Quixote, Alonso Quixano reads so many adventure novels he creates his alter ego and begins enacting his delusions. B) Her favorite literary genre is picaresque narratives, as they are often swashbuckling and charming.
Usage Over Time