Monday, 28 January 2013


Apicius. He looks like the type to go on Come Dine With Me


Adjective. Now rare. E17.
[from Apicius Roman epicure of the early 1st century.]

Of or pertaining to luxurious eating; epicurean.

There's a bit more to this word, it would seem, than the OED's rather sparse definition. Part of the Chambers definition is "luxurious and expensive in diet." Other reference works I've consulted also carry that tone of not just being a luxurious eater, but a particularly refined and fastidious one. It reminds me of a memorable quote in the film Ratatouille, in which Anton Ego, the rather cadaverous food critic, says: 

"I don't like food; I love it. And if I don't love it, I don't swallow."

The popularity of television programmes like Come Dine With Me, in which members of the public seemingly vie to be the most objectionable and odious critic of each other's cooking possible, suggest there's a little piece of apician perniciousness in all of us.

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