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piquant

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adjective pi·quant \ˈpē-kənt, -ˌkänt; ˈpi-kwənt\

Simple Definition of piquant

  • : having a pleasant, spicy taste

  • : interesting and exciting

Full Definition of piquant

  1. 1 :  engagingly provocative; also :  having a lively arch charm

  2. 2 :  agreeably stimulating to the palate; especially :  spicy

pi·quant·ly adverb
pi·quant·ness noun

Examples of piquant

  1. piquant vegetables seasoned with pepper

  2. He served the fish with a piquant sauce.

  3. a piquant bit of gossip



Origin of piquant

Middle French, from present participle of piquer


First Known Use: 1616

Synonym Discussion of piquant

pungent, piquant, poignant, racy mean sharp and stimulating to the mind or the senses. pungent implies a sharp, stinging, or biting quality especially of odors <a cheese with a pungent odor>. piquant suggests a power to whet the appetite or interest through tartness or mild pungency <a piquant sauce>. poignant suggests something is sharply or piercingly effective in stirring one's emotions <felt a poignant sense of loss>. racy implies having a strongly characteristic natural quality fresh and unimpaired <spontaneous, racy prose>.


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