Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A large, elaborately prepared meal, usually for many persons and often accompanied by entertainment; a banquet.
  • n. A meal that is well prepared and abundantly enjoyed.
  • n. A periodic religious festival commemorating an event or honoring a god or saint.
  • n. Something giving great pleasure or satisfaction: a book that is a veritable feast for the mind.
  • transitive v. To give a feast for; entertain or feed sumptuously: feasted the guests on venison.
  • intransitive v. To partake of a feast; eat heartily.
  • intransitive v. To experience something with gratification or delight: feasted on the view.
  • idiom feast (one's) eyes on To be delighted or gratified by the sight of: We feasted our eyes on the paintings.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A very large meal, often of a ceremonial nature.
  • n. Something delightful
  • v. To partake in a feast, or large meal.
  • v. To dwell upon (something) with delight.
  • v. To hold a feast in honor of (someone).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A festival; a holiday; a solemn, or more commonly, a joyous, anniversary.
  • n. A festive or joyous meal; a grand, ceremonious, or sumptuous entertainment, of which many guests partake; a banquet characterized by tempting variety and abundance of food.
  • n. That which is partaken of, or shared in, with delight; something highly agreeable; entertainment.
  • intransitive v. To eat sumptuously; to dine or sup on rich provisions, particularly in large companies, and on public festivals.
  • intransitive v. To be highly gratified or delighted.
  • transitive v. To entertain with sumptuous provisions; to treat at the table bountifully.
  • transitive v. To delight; to gratify.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To make a feast; have a feast; eat sumptuously or abundantly.
  • Figuratively, to dwell with gratification or delight: as, to feast on a poem or a picture.
  • To provide with a feast; entertain with sumptuous fare.
  • To delight; pamper; gratify luxuriously: as, to feast the soul.
  • n. A festival in commemoration of some event, or in honor of some distinguished person; a set time of festivity and rejoicing: opposed to fast.
  • n. A sumptuous entertainment or repast of which a number of guests partake; particularly, a rich or splendid public entertainment.
  • n. Any rich, delicious, or abundant repast or meal; hence, something delicious or highly agreeable, or in which some delectable quality abounds.
  • n. Synonyms Feast, Banquet, Festival. The idea of a social meal of unusual richness or abundance, for the purposes of pleasure, may be common to these words. Feast is generic; specifically, it differs from banquet in the fact that at a feast the food is abundant and choice, while at a banquet there is richness or expensiveness, and especially pomp or ceremony. The essential characteristic of a festival is concurrence in the manifestation of joy, the joyous celebration of some event, feasting being a frequent but not necessary part: as, to hold high festival. See carousal.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a ceremonial dinner party for many people
  • n. an elaborate party (often outdoors)
  • v. gratify
  • n. a meal that is well prepared and greatly enjoyed
  • n. something experienced with great delight
  • v. provide a feast or banquet for
  • v. partake in a feast or banquet

Etymologies

Middle English feste, from Old French, from Vulgar Latin *fēsta, from Latin, pl. of fēstum, from fēstus, festive; see dhēs- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English feest, feste, fest, from Old French feste, from Latin festa, plural of festum ("holiday, festival, feast"). (Wiktionary)
From Middle English feesten, festen, from Old French fester, from Medieval Latin festāre, from the noun. See above. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • "This is what I call the feast and flow," said Mr Pitskiver; while Mr

    Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine — Volume 55, No. 342, April, 1844

  • She dined publicly in state; a procession of the municipal magistrates presented her a sample of the wines of the district; and, as she tasted the luscious offering, the coopers celebrated what they called a feast of Bacchus, waving their hoops as they danced round the room in grotesque figures.

    The Life of Marie Antoinette

  • Spirit of God, in holy eucharistical ordinances, are the marriage-feast; and the whole collective body of all those who partake of this feast is the bride, the Lamb's wife; they eat into one body, and drink into one Spirit, and are not mere spectators or guests, but coalesce into the espoused party, the mystical body of Christ.

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume VI (Acts to Revelation)

  • The day of a feast is a day of slaughter, or sacrifice, Jam.v. 5.

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume V (Matthew to John)

  • But if we take notice how Christ was received into Jerusalem five days before the Passover, with those very rites and solemnities that were used at the feast of Tabernacles, viz. "with branches of palms," &c. chapter 12: 13, these words may seem to relate to that time; and so the word feast might not denote the individual feast that was now instant, but the kind of feast, or festival-time.

    From the Talmud and Hebraica

  • From the Holy Father's June 6, 2007, General Audience on St. Cyprian, "the first Bishop in Africa to obtain the crown of martyrdom", whose feast is celebrated today:

    Saints

  • Opee-Kwan rose to his feet "And now, O Nam-Bok, the feast is ended, and we would listen concerning the strange things you have seen."

    NAM-BOK THE UNVERACIOUS

  • The guests are met, the feast is set: may'st hear the merry din - and the celebrated performance of the stage adaptation of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner began.

    EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT 2/5: The Bookman by Lavie Tidhar

  • Praise the bounty of the harvest laid in feast before us here.

    Thank you « Dating Jesus

  • A picnic feast is then shared among the living and the dead, recognizing no difference between them.

    Donna Henes: Holy Halloween: A Day to Dance with Death

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  • Rita's name was a feast in my mouth
    Rita's body was a wedding in my blood
    And I was lost in Rita for two years
    And for two years she slept on my arm
    And we made promises
    Over the most beautiful of cups

    - Mahmoud Darwish, 'Rita And The Rifle'.

    September 16, 2008

  • joantonym = fast

    April 25, 2008