Definition of delicacy noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈdelɪkəsi//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈdelɪkəsi//
    (pl. delicacies)
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  1. 1[uncountable] the quality of being, or appearing to be, easy to damage or break the delicacy of the fabric Her skin had the delicacy of a flower.
  2. 2[uncountable] the quality of being done carefully and gently the delicacy of his touch
  3. 3[uncountable] very careful behaviour in a difficult situation so that nobody is offended synonym tact She handled the situation with great sensitivity and delicacy.
  4. 4[uncountable] the fact that a situation is difficult and somebody may be easily offended I need to talk to you about a matter of some delicacy.
  5. 5[countable] a type of food considered to be very special in a particular place synonym speciality local delicacies Dr Jaffrey handed us a plate of dates: traditionally the delicacy with which to break the Ramadan fast.
  6. Word Originlate Middle English (in the senses ‘voluptuousness’ and ‘luxuriousness’): from delicate + -acy.Extra examples He handled the situation with extreme delicacy. The eggs of this bird are considered a great delicacy. These objects are very old and should be treated with great delicacy. the exquisite delicacy of the embroidery
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: delicacy