A ballerina's quick, perfect steps? An antique porcelain teacup? A tiny sentence etched inside a silver locket? All of these have delicacy, or fineness that comes from being light, beautiful, or small.

A delicacy can also be a prized dish that is eaten on special occasions or is especially loved by those in a certain culture or place. But what is a delicacy to some (chocolate-covered crickets, anyone?) might disgust others. Remember to use delicacy, or tact, in turning down someone else's delicacies. This could help you avoid hurting someone's feelings.

Definitions of delicacy

n the quality of being beautiful and delicate in appearance

daintiness, fineness
Type of:
a refined quality of gracefulness and good taste

n refined taste; tact

Type of:
appreciation, discernment, perceptiveness, taste
delicate discrimination (especially of aesthetic values)

n smallness of stature

Type of:
littleness, smallness
the property of having a relatively small size

n lack of physical strength

Type of:
the property of lacking physical or mental strength; liability to failure under pressure or stress or strain

n lightness in movement or manner

Type of:
life, liveliness, spirit, sprightliness
animation and energy in action or expression

n subtly skillful handling of a situation

diplomacy, discreetness, finesse
Type of:
tact, tactfulness
consideration in dealing with others and avoiding giving offense

n something considered choice to eat

dainty, goody, kickshaw, treat
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choice morsel, tidbit, titbit
a small tasty bit of food
savory, savoury
an aromatic or spicy dish served at the end of dinner or as an hors d'oeuvre
confection, sweet
a food rich in sugar
ambrosia, nectar
(classical mythology) the food and drink of the gods; mortals who ate it became immortal
gelatin, jelly
an edible jelly (sweet or pungent) made with gelatin and used as a dessert or salad base or a coating for foods
bone marrow, marrow
very tender and very nutritious tissue from marrowbones
calf's-foot jelly
a savory jelly made with gelatin obtained by boiling calves' feet
candy and other sweets considered collectively
preserved or candied fruit
a sweetened delicacy (as a preserve or pastry)
candy, confect
a rich sweet made of flavored sugar and often combined with fruit or nuts
a British sweet made with molasses and butter and almonds
chewing gum, gum
a preparation (usually made of sweetened chicle) for chewing
candied apple, candy apple, caramel apple, taffy apple, toffee apple
an apple that is covered with a candy-like substance (usually caramelized sugar)
center, centre
the sweet central portion of a piece of candy that is enclosed in chocolate or some other covering
candy containing a fruit or nut
maraschino, maraschino cherry
cherry preserved in true or imitation maraschino liqueur
colored beads of sugar used as a topping on e.g. candies and cookies
gelatin dessert
jellied dessert made with gelatin and fruit juice or water
savory jelly based on fish or meat stock used as a mold for meats or vegetables
Type of:
aliment, alimentation, nourishment, nutriment, nutrition, sustenance, victuals
a source of materials to nourish the body

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