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Line breaks: pun|gent
Pronunciation: /ˈpʌn(d)ʒ(ə)nt

Definition of pungent in English:


1Having a sharply strong taste or smell: the pungent smell of frying onions
More example sentences
  • Raw ginger has a refreshing smell and a pungent taste that most people like.
  • However, in our laboratory a strong pungent smell had been noticed in the morning, after overnight sterilization.
  • After four days, the beer however deteriorates and develops a vinegary and pungent smell and taste.
strong, powerful, pervasive, penetrating, suffocating, stifling;
sharp, acrid, acid, sour, biting, stinging, burning, smarting, irritating;
nauseating, nauseous, sickly, offensive, astringent, bitter, fetid, cloying
literary mephitic
highly flavoured, aromatic, spicy, spiced, piquant, peppery, hot, fiery
1.1(Of comment, criticism, or humour) having a sharp and caustic quality: he has expressed some fairly pungent criticisms
More example sentences
  • Bambooque's criticism is sharp and pungent, but without being limited to the leader.
  • The Duke of Norfolk, in the next row, offered pungent comments about one or two of them.
  • She has some pungent comments about the spineless response to terrorism.


late 16th century (in the sense 'very painful or distressing'): from Latin pungent- 'pricking', from the verb pungere.



Example sentences
  • Bush tomatoes have an intense, earthy-tomato and caramel flavor of great piquancy and pungency.
  • The oils have the pepper aroma and flavour but lack pungency.
  • Such levels of spices can be comfortably consumed in the regular diet, except when their consumption is limited by the pungency (red pepper) or strong odour (garlic).


Example sentences
  • Horses, on the other hand, gave off less offensive odours; harnessed to a mowing machine or harvester, in the heat of an autumn day, they emitted a sweaty smell and pungently broke wind.
  • Hepungently assesses the disgusting abdication of moral responsibility being displayed by Europe over the race to acquire nuclear weapons.
  • There is a whiff of conspiracy in the air and it reeks pungently of Chardonnay glugging down the plug hole and just a dash of carpet-trampled kettle chips.

Definition of pungent in:

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