1. exquisitely fine and subtle and pleasing; susceptible to injury
- a delicate violin passage
- delicate china
- a delicate flavor
2. marked by great skill especially in meticulous technique
- a surgeon's delicate touch
Similar word(s): skilled
3. easily broken or damaged or destroyed
- a kite too delicate to fly safely
4. easily hurt
- a baby's delicate skin
5. developed with extreme delicacy and subtlety
6. difficult to handle; requiring great tact
- delicate negotiations with the big powers
7. of an instrument or device; capable of registering minute differences or changes precisely
- almost undetectable with even the most delicate instruments
Similar word(s): sensitive
Sentences with delicate as an adjective:
- Those clothes are made from delicate lace.
- The negotiations were very delicate.
- Her face was delicate.
- The spider wove a delicate web.
- There was a delicate pattern of frost on the window.
- Set the washing machine to the delicate cycle.
- delicate behaviour; delicate attentions; delicate thoughtfulness
- a delicate child; delicate health
- Please don't speak so loudly: I'm feeling a bit delicate this morning.
- a delicate dish; delicate flavour
- a delicate shade of blue
- a delicate taste; a delicate ear for music
- a delicate thermometer
1. A delicate item of clothing, especially underwear or lingerie.
- Don't put that in with your jeans: it's a delicate!
2. (obsolete) A choice dainty; a delicacy.
- With abstinence all delicates he sees. — Dryden.
3. (obsolete) A delicate, luxurious, or effeminate person.
- All the vessels, then, which our delicates have, — those I mean that would seem to be more fine in their houses than their neighbours, — are only of the Corinth metal. — Holland.