Racy Ra"cy (r[=a]"s[y^]), a. [Compar. {Racier} (r[=a]"s[i^]*[~e]r); superl. {Raciest}.] [From {Race} a tribe, family.] 1. Having a strong flavor indicating origin; of distinct characteristic taste; tasting of the soil; hence, fresh; rich. [1913 Webster]

The racy wine, Late from the mellowing cask restored to light. --Pope. [1913 Webster]

2. Hence: Exciting to the mental taste by a strong or distinctive character of thought or language; peculiar and piquant; fresh and lively. [1913 Webster]

Our raciest, most idiomatic popular words. --M. Arnold. [1913 Webster]

Burns's English, though not so racy as his Scotch, is generally correct. --H. Coleridge. [1913 Webster]

The rich and racy humor of a natural converser fresh from the plow. --Prof. Wilson. [1913 Webster]

3. somewhat suggestive of sexual themes; slightly improper; risqu['e]. [PJC]

Syn: Spicy; spirited; lively; smart; piquant; risqu["u].

Usage: {Racy}, {Spicy}. Racy refers primarily to that peculiar flavor which certain wines are supposed to derive from the soil in which the grapes were grown; and hence we call a style or production racy when it ``smacks of the soil,'' or has an uncommon degree of natural freshness and distinctiveness of thought and language. Spicy, when applied to style, has reference to a spirit and pungency added by art, seasoning the matter like a condiment. It does not, like racy, suggest native peculiarity. A spicy article in a magazine; a spicy retort. Racy in conversation; a racy remark. [1913 Webster]

Rich, racy verses, in which we The soil from which they come, taste, smell, and see. --Cowley. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • racy — [rā′sē] adj. racier, raciest [ RACE2 + Y2] 1. having the characteristic taste, flavor, or quality associated with the original or genuine type [racy fruit] 2. lively; spirited; vigorous 3. piquant; pungent …   English World dictionary

  • racy — (adj.) 1650s, having a characteristic taste (of wines, fruits, etc.), from RACE (Cf. race) (n.2) in its older sense of flavor + Y (Cf. y) (2); meaning having a quality of vigor (1660s) led to that of improper, risqué, first recorded 1901,… …   Etymology dictionary

  • racy — [adj1] energetic, zestful animated, bright, buoyant, clever, distinctive, entertaining, exciting, exhilarating, fiery, forceful, forcible, gingery, heady, keen, lively, mettlesome, peppery, piquant, playful, poignant, pungent, rich, salty, saucy* …   New thesaurus

  • racy — index lurid, suggestive (risqué) Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • racy — *pungent, piquant, poignant, spicy, snappy Analogous words: exciting, stimulating, quickening, provoking or provocative (see corresponding verbs at PROVOKE): *spirited, mettlesome, fiery, gingery, peppery Contrasted words: *insipid, flat, jejune …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • racy — ► ADJECTIVE (racier, raciest) 1) suggestive; risqué. 2) lively, vigorous, or spirited. DERIVATIVES racily adverb raciness noun …   English terms dictionary

  • racy — I. adjective (racier; est) Etymology: 3race Date: circa 1650 1. a. full of zest or vigor b. having a strongly marked quality ; piquant < a racy flavor > c. risque …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • racy — UK [ˈreɪsɪ] / US adjective Word forms racy : adjective racy comparative racier superlative raciest a racy story, film, or play is slightly shocking in the way that it describes or shows sex Derived words: racily adverb raciness noun uncountable …   English dictionary

  • racy — rac|y [ˈreısi] adj [Date: 1600 1700; Origin: race particular taste (16 19 centuries)] racy writing is exciting and entertaining and often about sex ▪ a racy novel …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • racy — adjective speech or writing that is racy is exciting and entertaining: racy jokes/humour/stories (=connected with sex) racily adverb raciness noun (U) …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

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