- The definition of delicate is someone or something that is subtle, fragile, frail or a skilled example of something.
- An example of delicate is an unboiled egg.
- An example of delicate is a finally spun piece of glass.
- An example of delicate is a light and delicious cream sauce.
Eggs are delicate.
delicate definition by Webster's New World
- pleasing in its lightness, mildness, subtlety, etc.: a delicate flavor, odor, or color
- beautifully fine in texture, quality, or workmanship: delicate linen, delicate skin
- slight and subtle: a delicate difference
- easily damaged, spoiled, or disordered: a delicate vase, a delicate stomach
- frail in health: a delicate child
- needing careful handling, tact, etc.: a delicate situation
- showing tact, consideration, etc.
- finely sensitive in feeling, understanding, discriminating, or responding: a delicate ear for music, a delicate gauge
- finely skilled
- having or showing a sensitive or, sometimes, finicky distaste for what is considered offensive or improper
Origin: Middle English delicat ; from Classical Latin delicatus, giving pleasure, delightful ; from an unverified form delicare, for Old Latin delicere, to allure, entice ; from de-, intensive plush lacere: see delight
delicate definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- Pleasing to the senses, especially in a subtle way: a delicate flavor; a delicate violin passage.
- Exquisitely fine or dainty: delicate china.
- Frail in constitution or health.
- Easily broken or damaged: a kite too delicate to fly.
- Marked by sensitivity of discrimination: a critic's delicate perception.
- a. Considerate of the feelings of others.b. Concerned with propriety.c. Squeamish or fastidious.
- Requiring tactful treatment: a delicate situation.
- Fine or soft in touch or skill: a surgeon's delicate touch.
- Measuring, indicating, or responding to very small changes; precise: a delicate set of scales.
- Very subtle in difference or distinction.
Origin: Middle English delicat and French délicat, both from Latin dēlicātus, pleasing; akin to dēlicia, pleasure; see Delicious .
- delˈi·cate·ly adverb
- delˈi·cate·ness noun