tart

1 of 2

adjective

1
: agreeably sharp or acid to the taste
a tart apple
2
: marked by a biting, acrimonious, or cutting quality
a tart rejoinder
tartish adjective
tartly adverb
tartness noun

tart

2 of 2

noun

1
: a dish baked in a pastry shell : pie: such as
a
: a small pie or pastry shell without a top containing jelly, custard, or fruit
b
: a small pie made of pastry folded over a filling
2
a
: a promiscuous woman : a woman who has many sexual partners

Examples of tart in a Sentence

Adjective The wine is rather tart. The comedian responded to the heckler with a tart comeback. I didn't add enough sugar to the lemonade, and now it's way too tart.
Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective
Try this recipe with other sweet and tart Christmas flavors like cranberry. Southern Living Editors, Southern Living, 22 Feb. 2024 Each mouthful tastes slightly different, but the richly vegetal squash always manages to cut through all the sweet, tart and briny flavors competing for your palate’s attention. The Indianapolis Star, 19 Feb. 2024 This salad combines the sweet and slightly tart flavor of pomegranates with the creamy, salty taste of feta cheese and requires a wine that can complement both elements without overpowering them. Carole Kotkin, Miami Herald, 1 Feb. 2024 The combo of smooth pâté, sweet and tart jam, and chewy bread is not to be missed. Vivienne Peters; Photos By Judy Revenaugh, Kansas City Star, 24 Jan. 2024 Filling a bowl with sweet plantains, spicy chorizo and earthy black beans, and topping it with salty queso fresco, fresh cilantro and a squeeze of tart lime juice, hits all the right notes. Aaron Hutcherson, Washington Post, 6 Feb. 2024 Place the tart pan on a baking sheet; bake (middle rack) for 10 minutes, then cool on a rack for 10 minutes. Kathy Gunst, Charlotte Observer, 30 Jan. 2024 Strawberry lemonade and tart grapefruit juice create a drink that’s refreshing and not too sweet. Patricia S York, Southern Living, 30 Jan. 2024 While tart cherries contain a small amount of melatonin, what's really helping people relax is the magnesium. Sabrina Weiss, Peoplemag, 26 Jan. 2024
Noun
Whole Lemon Tart Rather than featuring lemon curd, this tart uses whole lemons to create the filling. Anna Rodriguez, Washington Post, 14 Feb. 2024 Decadent dark fruit with juicy blueberry and plum tart on the palate with a hint of allspice and dry herbs with a silky texture and long, flavorful finish. Cathrine Todd, Forbes, 10 Feb. 2024 Dessert choices are crackle cream puffs, raspberry almond tart or chocolate and raspberry Mousseline with white chocolate gelato. Connie Ogle, Miami Herald, 1 Feb. 2024 There’s a lemon tart on the list below, but here’s another one (it’s sweetened with honey). Joe Sevier, Bon Appétit, 31 Jan. 2024 Caro is back at my side between every course with a wine pairing, down to the dessert round: a Port from the Douro Valley to go with a lemon tart, sticky toffee pudding, and a trifecta of housemade ice creams in strawberry, vanilla, and chocolate. Michaela Trimble, Vogue, 23 Jan. 2024 One of the highlights is a Cuban-style pop tart made with guava, cream cheese and topped with a condensed milk icing that will simultaneously trigger nostalgia and remind you how much better homemade is. Connie Ogle, Miami Herald, 13 Feb. 2024 For Valentine’s Day, Manresa Bread has a variety of sweet cookies and treats, like passionfruit tart and chocolate cream pie. Laura Ness, The Mercury News, 9 Feb. 2024 Menu items on this three-course prix fixe menu include roasted heirloom chicken and a chocolate tart. Maura Fox, San Diego Union-Tribune, 6 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'tart.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Adjective

Middle English, from Old English teart sharp, severe; akin to Middle High German traz spite

Noun

Middle English tart, tarte, borrowed from Anglo-French tarte (also continental Old French), probably altered from Old French torte, tourte "round loaf," going back to Late Latin tōrta, probably alteration of Latin torta "curved, bent, coiled, twisted," from feminine of tortus, past participle of torquēre "to twist tightly, wind"; (sense 2) earlier, in argot or slang of England, Australia, and New Zealand, "girlfriend," perhaps short for jam tart, rhyming slang for sweetheart — more at torture entry 1

Note: Late Latin <torta> is first attested in several passages of the Vulgate, once as <tortam panis> (with pānis in the genitive). The connection to tortus, an adjective meaning "coiled," would seem natural applied to a round loaf of bread, presumably formable by coiling the dough. French tourte, however, as well as Italian torta (with /o/, not /ɔ/), have the reflex of ō rather than ŏ, a change for which no completely acceptable explanation has been found. J. Coromines (Diccionario crítico etimológico castellano e hispánico) sees Late Latin tōrta as originally the plural of a neuter *tōrtum, borrowed from Greek *tōrtídion, formed by crasis from tò artídion, a diminutive of ártos "bread"; though not impossible, the etymology depends crucially on multiple unattested forms. — French tarte would appear to be a modification of to(u)rte. It is attested with a variant tartre in late Old French and modern French dialects, and parallel words can be found in Italian: tartara (13th century) "cake made with almonds and sugar," Upper Italian tartra (Piedmont), tártera (Milan), tartra (Parma). These forms have been attributed to the influence of Medieval Latin tartarum "bitartrate of potassium" (see tartar entry 1), the crusts of which, formed in wine casks, would supposedly have had a likeness to crusts of bread or pastry.

First Known Use

Adjective

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of tart was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near tart

Cite this Entry

“Tart.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tart. Accessed 27 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

tart

1 of 2 adjective
1
: pleasantly sharp or sour to the taste
2
: having a sharp or biting quality
a tart voice
tartly adverb
tartness noun

tart

2 of 2 noun
: a small pie or pastry shell containing jelly, custard, or fruit

More from Merriam-Webster on tart

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