rel·​ish | \ˈre-lish \

Definition of relish 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : characteristic flavor especially : pleasing or zestful flavor

2 : a quantity just sufficient to flavor or characterize : trace

3a : enjoyment of or delight in something that satisfies one's tastes, inclinations, or desires eat with great relish

b : a strong liking : inclination has little relish for sports

4a : something adding a zestful flavor especially : a condiment (as of pickles or green tomatoes) eaten with other food to add flavor

b : appetizer, hors d'oeuvre


relished; relishing; relishes

Definition of relish (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to add relish to

2 : to be pleased or gratified by : enjoy

3 : to eat or drink with pleasure

4 : to appreciate with taste and discernment

intransitive verb

: to have a characteristic or pleasing taste

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Other Words from relish


relishable \ ˈre-​li-​shə-​bəl \ adjective

Examples of relish in a Sentence


I like to eat hot dogs with mustard and relish. She plays the role with great relish. He took particular relish in pointing out my error.


I relish traveling to new places. I don't relish the idea of working late tonight. He relishes the chance to compete again.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

There might not be a head basketball coach in the country who takes his shirt off in public as frequently and with as much relish as Nevada's Eric Musselman. Dan Steinberg,, "Nevada coach Eric Musselman can't seem to keep his shirt on," 19 Mar. 2018 Even on a Thursday night in mid-May, patrons crowded in and spilled out onto the deck overlooking the lake. Dinner begins with supper club classics of a relish tray, a mini loaf of bread, soup and a salad. Chelsey Lewis, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "4 dining destinations in Wisconsin worth a road trip," 16 May 2018 Local buyers lined up for salsa, pickles, jams, jellies, relish, and more. Dana Mcmahan, The Courier-Journal, "Here are the top fresh foods to try at Louisville-area farmers markets," 15 May 2018 Remarkable dishes at the brewery’s newish Fortville brasserie and taproom have recently included seared salmon on sweet corn custard with sautéed radishes and tomato relish. Liz Biro, Indianapolis Star, "Every restaurant you'll try at IndyStar Wine & Food Experience," 25 June 2018 Plummer said with characteristic relish for a meaty role. Washington Post, "Q&A: Christopher Plummer on playing a weed dealer at 88," 15 June 2018 What to get: Besides the jabana coffee ($3), which is excellent, the eggplant salad with yogurt ($6.35) and foul masalah ($8.50); on the weekends, ask for the specials with kisra ($11.80) and pepper relish. Jonathan Kauffman, San Francisco Chronicle, "Exile in the Tenderloin: The quest for a future at San Francisco’s only Sudanese cafe," 17 May 2018 While most DJs, then and now, were loath to mingle in this fashion, Biondi did so with relish, endearing himself to packs of teens who became devoted listeners. Rick Kogan,, "She used to listen to Chicago radio's Dick Biondi under her pillow; now she's making a movie," 5 July 2018 The newest justice jumped into his new job with relish. Bill Mears, Fox News, "Anthony Kennedy: Swing justice wielded quiet power in a range of high-profile cases," 27 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Or perhaps Pfeiffer, a regular CNN commentator, is relishing his liberation from the constraints of cable television. John Diaz,, "‘Yes We (Still) Can,’ by Dan Pfeiffer," 15 June 2018 Most of us do not relish the sight of the scuttling creatures and are more inclined to leap away with a yelp of disgust than to crouch down and admire them up close. Meghan Cox Gurdon, WSJ, "Children’s Books: All Creatures Great and Small," 8 June 2018 Let the relish cool to room temperature and then serve or store in a lidded container in the refrigerator. San Antonio Express-News, "Recipe: Spicy Corn Relish," 11 July 2018 Mr Ellison would unleash his indignant and ingenious fury on anyone who offended him, relishing every opportunity to rage at reactionaries and Republicans. The Economist, "Harlan Ellison died on June 27th," 5 July 2018 Tunsil seemed not to relish his weekly chat with reporters last season, not that anyone could blame him. Adam H. Beasley, miamiherald, "Laremy Tunsil knows 2017 was not good enough. Here's why he expects 2018 to be better," 14 June 2018 Maybe Melania is just relishing the opportunity to lie in bed and get away from it all. Michelle Ruiz, Vogue, "So, Um, Where Exactly Is Melania Trump?," 30 May 2018 He was rapturously welcomed at opposition rallies and seemed to relish poking fun at the plutocratic Najib, describing him as someone who would try to buy his way into heaven but who'd be sent to hell. Stephen Wright And Eileen Ng, Fox News, "Ex-strongman seeks legacy as savior of Malaysia's democracy," 11 May 2018 Perhaps the last person expected on music’s biggest night — and in a Cardi B collaboration, no less — Clinton appeared very much to relish the opportunity to throw some shade toward 45. Eliza Berman, Time, "The Best, Worst and Most Surprising Moments of the 2018 Grammys," 29 Jan. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'relish.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of relish


1530, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1586, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for relish


alteration of Middle English reles odor, taste, from Middle French, something left behind, release — more at release

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Statistics for relish

Last Updated

4 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for relish

The first known use of relish was in 1530

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More Definitions for relish



English Language Learners Definition of relish

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a seasoned sauce that is used to add flavor to other foods and that is made of chopped fruit or vegetables; especially : such a sauce made from pickles

: enjoyment of or delight in something

: a feeling of liking something



English Language Learners Definition of relish (Entry 2 of 2)

: to enjoy or take pleasure in (something)


rel·​ish | \ˈre-lish \

Kids Definition of relish

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : great enjoyment He plays the game with relish.

2 : a highly seasoned food eaten with other food to add flavor


relished; relishing

Kids Definition of relish (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to be pleased by : enjoy She relishes the attention she's been getting.

2 : to like the taste of

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Comments on relish

What made you want to look up relish? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


something that serves to warn or remind

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