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American Dictionary of the English Language

Webster's Dictionary 1828

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Delicacy


DELICACY, noun In a general sense, that which delights or pleases. Hence,

1. Fineness of texture; smoothness; softness; tenderness; as the delicacy of the skin; and nearly in the same sense, applicable to food; as the delicacy of flesh, meat or vegetables. Hence,

2. Daintiness; pleasantness to the taste.

3. Elegant or feminine beauty; as delicacy of form.

4. Nicety; minute accuracy; as the delicacy of coloring in painting.

5. Neatness in dress; elegance proceeding from a nice selection and adjustment of the several parts of dress.

6. Softness of manners; civility or politemess proceeding from a nice observance of propriety, and a desire to please; as delicacy of behavior.

7. Indulgence; gentle treatment; as delicacy of education.

8. Tenderness; scrupulousness; the quality manifested in nice attention to right, and care to avoid wrong, or offense.

9. Acute or nice perception of what is pleasing to the sense of tasting; hence figuratively, a nice perception of beauty and deformity, or the faculty of such nice perception.

DELICACY of taste tends to invigorate the social affections, and moderate those that are selfish.

10. That which delights the senses, particularly the taste; applied to eatables; as, the peach is a great delicacy

11. Tenderness of constitution; weakness; that quality or state of the animal body which renders it very impressible to injury; as delicacy of constitution or frame.

12. Smallness; fineness; slenderness; tenuity; as the delicacy of a thread, or fiber.

13. Tenderness; nice susceptibility of impression; as delicacy of feeling.