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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce pungent (audio)

Dictionary definition of pungent

Having a strong, sharp, and often unpleasant smell or taste.
"The cheese had a pungent smell that was off-putting to some."

Detailed meaning of pungent

It refers to a strong and often overpowering sensation that can be perceived through the sense of smell or taste. Pungent implies a strong and sometimes unpleasant odor or taste that can be sharp and biting, it can evoke a strong reaction in the senses. It can be used to describe a wide range of odors and flavors, such as spices, herbs, cheeses, and even certain types of foods and drinks. For example, a pungent cheese is one that has a strong, sharp, and often intense flavor, a pungent spice is one that has a strong, sharp, and often intense aroma and flavor, and a pungent smell is one that is strong, sharp, and often intense. The term pungent can also be used to describe something that is emotionally or intellectually stimulating in a similar way as to stimulate the senses, it can evoke a strong reaction, and it can be overwhelming.

Example sentences containing pungent

1. The pungent aroma of garlic filled the kitchen.
2. The cheese had a pungent and tangy flavor.
3. Her perfume was so pungent it lingered in the air.
4. The curry's pungent spices made her eyes water.
5. The gym had a pungent odor after a hard workout.
6. The pungent taste of the mustard was overpowering.

History and etymology of pungent

The adjective 'pungent' has its etymological origins in Latin, particularly from the word 'pungere,' which means 'to prick' or 'to sting.' This Latin term reflects the sharp and piercing quality that 'pungent' often describes. When used to characterize smells or tastes, 'pungent' implies a strong and sharp sensation that can sometimes be unpleasant, akin to the sensation of being pricked or stung by a sharp object. The word's etymology underscores its essence, highlighting the intensity and sometimes discomfort associated with odors or flavors that are described as pungent.

Quiz: Find the meaning of pungent

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Further usage examples of pungent

1. A pungent scent of vinegar came from the salad.
2. The pungent herbs in the soup awakened the senses.
3. His cologne had a pungent, musky undertone.
4. The pungent odor of the skunk filled the night air.
5. The cheese's pungent aroma was not for the faint of heart.
6. The pungent scent of fresh flowers greeted her in the garden.
7. The sauce had a pungent kick from the hot peppers.
8. The pungent smell of the fish market lingered on his clothes.
9. A pungent cloud of smoke billowed from the barbecue.
10. The pungent taste of the blue cheese surprised her palate.
11. The pungent fumes from the chemicals were noxious.
12. The pungent scent of freshly brewed coffee filled the café.
13. The pungent scent of the pine forest invigorated him.
14. The pungent spices in the curry added depth to the dish.
15. The pungent aroma of garlic filled the kitchen.
16. The spices added a pungent flavor to the dish.
17. The flower had a pungent odor that attracted bees.
18. The cleaning product had a pungent smell that lingered in the air.
19. The herb had a pungent taste that added depth to the sauce.
20. The garbage emitted a pungent smell that made people hold their breath.
21. The smoke from the fire was pungent and acrid.
22. The perfume had a pungent scent that some people found overpowering.
23. The insect repellent had a pungent smell that kept bugs away.
24. The paint had a pungent odor that required ventilation during use.
25. The seafood had a pungent odor that indicated it was not fresh.



sharp, bland, mild, tasteless


Annoyance and Irritation, Disgust and Aversion, Middle School 11, Sensory and Perception

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