Definition of rancid in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈransəd/


(Of foods containing fat or oil) smelling or tasting unpleasant as a result of being old and stale.
Example sentences
  • If you don't know what it's supposed to smell like, it might smell a little like rancid butter.
  • Butyric acid is responsible not only for the smell of rancid butter, but also contributes to the odor of sweat.
  • When I returned I was laying in bed and couldn't sleep because of this rancid smell consuming the house.
sour, stale, overstored, turned, rank, putrid, foul, rotten, bad, off;
literary noisome



Pronunciation: /ranˈsidətē/
Example sentences
  • Antioxidants added to the fat at the time of storage prevent the occurrence of rancidity.
  • Store any leftovers in a cool, dry place because the high oil content of the nuts can lead to rancidity.
  • A practical strategy to check for rancidity is to simply smell the fish oil.


Early 17th century: from Latin rancidus 'stinking'.

  • Latin rancidus which means ‘stinking’ is the source of rancid in English. The related rancor ‘rankness’ gives us rancour (Middle English).

Words that rhyme with rancid


For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: ran·cid

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