Dain·ty n.; pl. Dainties
1. Value; estimation; the gratification or pleasure taken in anything. [Obs.]
I ne told no deyntee of her love. --Chaucer.
2. That which is delicious or delicate; a delicacy.
That precious nectar may the taste renew
Of Eden's dainties, by our parents lost. --Beau. & Fl.
3. A term of fondness. [Poetic]
Syn: -- Dainty, Delicacy.
Usage: These words are here compared as denoting articles of food. The term delicacy as applied to a nice article of any kind, and hence to articles of food which are particularly attractive. Dainty is stronger, and denotes some exquisite article of cookery. A hotel may be provided with all the delicacies of the season, and its table richly covered with dainties.
I mean of taste, sight, smell, herbs, fruits, and flowers,
Walks and the melody of birds. --Milton.
[A table] furnished plenteously with bread,
And dainties, remnants of the last regale. --Cowper.
Dain·ty, a. [Compar. Daintier superl. Daintiest.]
1. Rare; valuable; costly. [Obs.]
Full many a deynté horse had he in stable. --Chaucer.
Note: ☞ Hence the proverb “dainty maketh dearth,” i. e., rarity makes a thing dear or precious.
2. Delicious to the palate; toothsome.
Make rich the ribs. --Shak.
3. Nice; delicate; elegant, in form, manner, or breeding; well-formed; neat; tender.
Those dainty limbs which nature lent
For gentle usage and soft delicacy. --Milton.
I would be the girdle.
About her dainty, dainty waist. --Tennyson.
4. Requiring dainties. Hence: Overnice; hard to please; fastidious; squeamish; scrupulous; ceremonious.
Thew were a fine and dainty people. --Bacon.
And let us not be dainty of leave-taking,
But shift away. --Shak.
To make dainty, to assume or affect delicacy or fastidiousness. [Obs.]
Ah ha, my mistresses! which of you all
Will now deny to dance? She that makes dainty,
She, I'll swear, hath corns. --Shak.
adj 1: affectedly dainty or refined [syn: mincing, niminy-piminy,
2: of delicate composition and artistry; "a dainty teacup"; "an
exquisite cameo" [syn: exquisite]
3: especially pleasing to the taste; "a dainty dish to set
before a kind"; "a tasty morsel" [syn: tasty]
4: excessively fastidious and easily disgusted; "too nice about
his food to take to camp cooking"; "so squeamish he would
only touch the toilet handle with his elbow" [syn: nice,
overnice, prissy, squeamish]
n : something considered choice to eat [syn: delicacy, goody,
[also: daintiest, daintier]