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From Latin exquīsītus, perfect passive participle of exquīrō (seek out).


  • (file)
  • (UK) IPA(key): /ɪkˈskwɪzɪt/, /ˈɛkskwɪzɪt/


exquisite (comparative more exquisite, superlative most exquisite)

  1. Especially fine or pleasing; exceptional.
    They sell good coffee and pastries, but their chocolate is exquisite.
    Sourav Ganguly scored an exquisite century in his debut Test match.
    • 1907 August, Robert W[illiam] Chambers, chapter I, in The Younger Set, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, →OCLC:
      Selwyn, sitting up rumpled and cross-legged on the floor, after having boloed Drina to everybody's exquisite satisfaction, looked around at the sudden rustle of skirts to catch a glimpse of a vanishing figure—a glimmer of ruddy hair and the white curve of a youthful face, half-buried in a muff.
  2. (obsolete) Carefully adjusted; precise; accurate; exact.
  3. Recherché; far-fetched; abstruse.
  4. Of special beauty or rare excellence.
  5. Exceeding; extreme; keen, in a bad or a good sense.
    exquisite pain or pleasure
  6. Of delicate perception or close and accurate discrimination; not easy to satisfy; exact; fastidious.
    exquisite judgment, taste, or discernment
    • 1655, Thomas Fuller, edited by James Nichols, The Church History of Britain, [], new edition, volumes (please specify |volume=I to III), London: [] [James Nichols] for Thomas Tegg and Son, [], published 1837, →OCLC:
      his books of Oriental languages, wherein he was exquisite
      The spelling has been modernized.


Derived terms[edit]



exquisite (plural exquisites)

  1. (rare) Fop, dandy. [from early 20th c.]
    • 1849, Alexander Mackay, The western world; or, travels in the United States in 1846-87, page 93:
      It is impossible to meet with a more finished coxcomb than a Broadway exquisite, or a “Broadway swell,” which is the designation attached to him on the spot.
    • 1911, James George Frazer, The Golden Bough, volume 9, page 287:
      When this bejewelled exquisite lounged through the streets playing on his flute, puffing at a cigar, and smelling at a nosegay, the people whom he met threw themselves on the earth before him and prayed to him with sighs and tears.
    • 1925, P. G. Wodehouse, Sam the Sudden, Random House, London:2007, p. 42.
      So striking was his appearance that two exquisites, emerging from the Savoy Hotel and pausing on the pavement to wait for a vacant taxi, eyed him with pained disapproval as he approached, and then, starting, stared in amazement.
      'Good Lord!' said the first exquisite.






  1. inflection of exquisit:
    1. strong/mixed nominative/accusative feminine singular
    2. strong nominative/accusative plural
    3. weak nominative all-gender singular
    4. weak accusative feminine/neuter singular




  1. vocative masculine singular of exquīsītus


  • exquisite”, in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers