Word of the Day : May 4, 2012

bon vivant

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noun bahn-vee-VAHNT

Definition

: a person having cultivated, refined, and sociable tastes especially in respect to food and drink

Did You Know?

Fans of fine French wine and cuisine won't be surprised to hear that the French language gave us a number of words for those who enjoy good living and good eating. "Gourmet," "gourmand," and "gastronome" come from French, as does "bon vivant." In the late 17th century, English speakers borrowed this French phrase, which literally means "good liver." No, we don't mean "liver," as in that iron-rich food your mother made you eat. We mean "liver," as in "one who lives" - in this case, "one who lives well."


Examples

Mr. Murray is a congenial bon vivant who seems to relish the fine art of conversation almost as much as he does the fine art of French cooking.

"Polemicist and journalist Christopher Hitchens, who died in December at 62 after a battle with esophageal cancer, was celebrated Friday as an incorrigible contrarian, dazzling public intellectual, obdurate justice seeker, and passionate bon vivant in a star-studded memorial service at New York's Cooper Union." -- From an article by Lloyd Grove on The Daily Beast, April 20, 2012



Test Your Memory

What is the meaning of "piquant," our Word of the Day from April 16? The answer is ...


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