palate

[pal-it]
noun
1.
Anatomy. the roof of the mouth, consisting of an anterior bony portion (hard palate) and a posterior muscular portion (soft palate) that separate the oral cavity from the nasal cavity. See diag. under mouth.
2.
the sense of taste: a dinner to delight the palate.
3.
intellectual or aesthetic taste; mental appreciation.

Origin:
1350–1400; Middle English palat < Latin palātum roof of the mouth

palateless, adjective
palatelike, adjective

palate, palette, pallet.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
palate (ˈpælɪt)
 
n
1.  hard palate See soft palate the roof of the mouth, separating the oral and nasal cavitiesRelated: palatine
2.  the sense of taste: she had no palate for the wine
3.  relish or enjoyment
4.  botany (in some two-lipped corollas) the projecting part of the lower lip that closes the opening of the corolla
 
Related: palatine
 

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

palate
late 14c., "roof of the mouth," from O.Fr. palat, from L. palatum "roof of the mouth," perhaps of Etruscan origin. Popularly considered the seat of taste, hence transferred meaning "sense of taste" (1520s).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

palate pal·ate (pāl'ĭt)
n.
The bony and muscular partition between the oral and nasal cavities; the roof of the mouth.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
palate   (pāl'ĭt)  Pronunciation Key 
The roof of the mouth in vertebrate animals, separating the mouth from the passages of the nose. ◇ The bony part of the palate is called the hard palate. ◇ A soft, flexible, rear portion of the palate, called the soft palate, is present in mammals only and serves to close off the mouth from the nose during swallowing.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary
palate [(pal-uht)]

The roof of the mouth. The palate separates the mouth from the nasal cavity.

Note: It is sometimes said that a person has a “cultivated palate” if he or she has a discerning taste for food.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
The cleft palate is a common and serious birth defect, but you don't hear much
  about it.
Sweetbreads require a much more sophisticated palate.
However, my wine merchant claims that the slope of the function is unique to
  the consumer's palate.
They may be pricey but your palate will be grateful.
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