piquant

[pee-kuhnt, -kahnt, pee-kahnt]
adjective
1.
agreeably pungent or sharp in taste or flavor; pleasantly biting or tart: a piquant aspic.
2.
agreeably stimulating, interesting, or attractive: a piquant glance.
3.
of an interestingly provocative or lively character: a piquant wit.
4.
Archaic. sharp or stinging, especially to the feelings.

Origin:
1515–25; < French: literally, pricking (see pique1, -ant); replacing pickante < Italian piccante

piquancy, piquantness, noun
piquantly, adverb


1. spicy. 2. intriguing. 3. sharp, clever.


1. insipid.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
piquant (ˈpiːkənt, -kɑːnt)
 
adj
1.  having an agreeably pungent or tart taste
2.  lively or stimulating to the mind
 
[C16: from French (literally: prickling), from piquer to prick, goad; see pique1]
 
'piquancy
 
n
 
'piquantness
 
n
 
'piquantly
 
adv

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

piquant
1521, from M.Fr. piquant "pricking, stimulating, irritating," from O.Fr. prp. of piquer "to prick, sting, nettle" (see pike (2)).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
The rich spirit is shaken awake by the buoyant piquancy of the ginger beer, while the lime slashes through the sweetness of both.
Its piquancy shows off a light raspberry-strawberry flavor.
But the smell was magnificent and hearty, with piquancy from balsamic vinegar.
There was a piquancy, a sharp flavor, in his talk that was delightful.
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