Hypertext Webster Gateway: "taste"

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Taste \Taste\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Tasted}; p. pr. & vb. n.
{Tasting}.] [OE. tasten to feel, to taste, OF. taster, F.
tater to feel, to try by the touch, to try, to taste,
(assumed) LL. taxitare, fr. L. taxare to touch sharply, to
estimate. See {Tax}, v. t.]
1. To try by the touch; to handle; as, to taste a bow. [Obs.]

Taste it well and stone thou shalt it find.

2. To try by the touch of the tongue; to perceive the relish
or flavor of (anything) by taking a small quantity into a
mouth. Also used figuratively.

When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water
that was made wine. --John ii. 9.

When Commodus had once tasted human blood, he became
incapable of pity or remorse. --Gibbon.

3. To try by eating a little; to eat a small quantity of.

I tasted a little of this honey. --1 Sam. xiv.

4. To become acquainted with by actual trial; to essay; to
experience; to undergo.

He . . . should taste death for every man. --Heb.
ii. 9.

5. To partake of; to participate in; -- usually with an
implied sense of relish or pleasure.

Thou . . . wilt taste No pleasure, though in
pleasure, solitary. --Milton.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Taste \Taste\, v. i.
1. To try food with the mouth; to eat or drink a little only;
to try the flavor of anything; as, to taste of each kind
of wine.

2. To have a smack; to excite a particular sensation, by
which the specific quality or flavor is distinguished; to
have a particular quality or character; as, this water
tastes brackish; the milk tastes of garlic.

Yea, every idle, nice, and wanton reason Shall to
the king taste of this action. --Shak.

3. To take sparingly.

For age but tastes of pleasures, youth devours.

4. To have perception, experience, or enjoyment; to partake;
as, to taste of nature's bounty. --Waller.

The valiant never taste of death but once. --Shak.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Taste \Taste\, n.
1. The act of tasting; gustation.

2. A particular sensation excited by the application of a
substance to the tongue; the quality or savor of any
substance as perceived by means of the tongue; flavor; as,
the taste of an orange or an apple; a bitter taste; an
acid taste; a sweet taste.

3. (Physiol.) The one of the five senses by which certain
properties of bodies (called their taste, savor, flavor)
are ascertained by contact with the organs of taste.

Note: Taste depends mainly on the contact of soluble matter
with the terminal organs (connected with branches of
the glossopharyngeal and other nerves) in the
papill[ae] on the surface of the tongue. The base of
the tongue is considered most sensitive to bitter
substances, the point to sweet and acid substances.

4. Intellectual relish; liking; fondness; -- formerly with
of, now with for; as, he had no taste for study.

I have no taste Of popular applause. --Dryden.

5. The power of perceiving and relishing excellence in human
performances; the faculty of discerning beauty, order,
congruity, proportion, symmetry, or whatever constitutes
excellence, particularly in the fine arts and
belles-letters; critical judgment; discernment.

6. Manner, with respect to what is pleasing, refined, or in
accordance with good usage; style; as, music composed in
good taste; an epitaph in bad taste.

7. Essay; trial; experience; experiment. --Shak.

8. A small portion given as a specimen; a little piece
tastted of eaten; a bit. --Bacon.

9. A kind of narrow and thin silk ribbon.

Syn: Savor; relish; flavor; sensibility; gout.

Usage: {Taste}, {Sensibility}, {Judgment}. Some consider
taste as a mere sensibility, and others as a simple
exercise of judgment; but a union of both is requisite
to the existence of anything which deserves the name.
An original sense of the beautiful is just as
necessary to [ae]sthetic judgments, as a sense of
right and wrong to the formation of any just
conclusions or moral subjects. But this ``sense of the
beautiful'' is not an arbitrary principle. It is under
the guidance of reason; it grows in delicacy and
correctness with the progress of the individual and of
society at large; it has its laws, which are seated in
the nature of man; and it is in the development of
these laws that we find the true ``standard of

What, then, is taste, but those internal powers,
Active and strong, and feelingly alive To each
fine impulse? a discerning sense Of decent and
sublime, with quick disgust From things
deformed, or disarranged, or gross In species?
This, nor gems, nor stores of gold, Nor purple
state, nor culture, can bestow, But God alone,
when first his active hand Imprints the secret
bias of the soul. --Akenside.

{Taste of buds}, or {Taste of goblets} (Anat.), the
flask-shaped end organs of taste in the epithelium of the
tongue. They are made up of modified epithelial cells
arranged somewhat like leaves in a bud.

From WordNet (r) 1.7 (wn)

n 1: the sensation that results when taste buds in the tongue and
throat convey information about the chemical composition
of a soluble stimulus; "the candy left him with a bad
taste"; "the melon had a delicious taste" [syn: {taste
sensation}, {gustatory sensation}, {taste perception}, {gustatory
2: a strong liking; "my own preference is for good literature";
"the Irish have a penchant for blarney" [syn: {preference},
{penchant}, {predilection}]
3: delicate discrimination (especially of aesthetic values);
"arrogance and lack of taste contributed to his rapid
success"; "to ask at that particular time was the ultimate
in bad taste" [syn: {appreciation}, {discernment}, {perceptiveness}]
4: a brief experience of something; "he got a taste of life on
the wild side"; "she enjoyed her brief taste of
5: a small amount eaten or drunk; "take a taste--you'll like
it" [syn: {mouthful}]
6: the faculty of taste; "his cold deprived him of his sense of
taste" [syn: {gustation}, {sense of taste}, {gustatory
7: a kind of sensing; distinguishing substances by means of the
taste buds; "a wine tasting" [syn: {tasting}]
v 1: have flavor; taste of something [syn: {savor}, {savour}]
2: take a sample of; "Try these new crackers"; "Sample the
regional dishes" [syn: {sample}, {try}, {try out}]
3: perceive by the sense of taste; "Can you taste the garlic?"
4: have a distinctive or characteristic taste; "This tastes of
nutmeg" [syn: {smack}]
5: distinguish flavors; "We tasted wines last night"

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