a. Hearty enjoyment or appreciation: "pausing with the relish of a man who knows he's about to get off a zinger" (Tad Friend). See Synonyms at zest.
b. Something that lends pleasure or zest: The fact that the opposing team is our longtime rival was an added relish to our victory.
c. A keen liking for something: a relish for adventure.
a. A spicy or savory condiment or appetizer, such as chutney or olives.
b. A condiment of chopped sweet pickles.
a. The flavor of a food, especially when appetizing.
b. A trace or suggestion of a pleasurable quality.
v. rel·ished, rel·ish·ing, rel·ish·es
a. To take keen pleasure in; enjoy fully: relished every minute of their vacation.
b. To be pleased with or look forward to: I don't relish speaking with that student's parents about his behavior.
2. Archaic To give spice or flavor to.
Archaic To have a pleasing or distinctive taste.
[Alteration of Middle English reles, taste, from Old French, something remaining, from relaissier, to leave behind; see RELEASE.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.