- any of a class of pungent or aromatic substances of vegetable origin, as pepper, cinnamon, or cloves, used as seasoning, preservatives, etc.
- such substances collectively or as material: Cookies without spice can be tasteless.
- a spicy or aromatic odor or fragrance.
- something that gives zest: a spice of humor in his solemnity.
- a piquant, interesting element or quality; zest; piquancy: The anecdotes lent spice to her talk.
- Archaic. a small quantity of something; trace; bit.
verb (used with object), spiced, spic·ing.
- to prepare or season with a spice or spices.
- to give zest, piquancy, or interest to by something added.
- (initial capital letter) the proprietary name of a brand of synthetic cannabis compound.
- any of a variety of aromatic vegetable substances, such as ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, used as flavourings
- these substances collectively
- something that represents or introduces zest, charm, or gusto
- rare a small amount
- Yorkshire dialect confectionery
- to prepare or flavour (food) with spices
- to introduce charm or zest into
early 13c., from Old French espice, from Late Latin species (plural) “spices, goods, wares,” from Latin “kind, sort” (see species). Early druggists recognized four “types” of spices: saffron, clove, cinnamon, nutmeg. Figurative sense of “slight touch or trace of something” is recorded from 1530s. Spice-cake first attested 1520s.
“to season with spices,” early 14c. (implied in spiced), from spice (n.).
see variety is the spice of life.