from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun An elaborate, sumptuous repast.
  • noun A ceremonial dinner honoring a particular guest or occasion.
  • transitive & intransitive verb To honor at or partake of a banquet.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A feast; a rich entertainment of food and drink.
  • noun A light entertainment at the end of a feast; a dessert; a refection at which wine is drunk.
  • noun A slight repast between meals: sometimes called running banquet.
  • noun In fortification, same as banquette, 1.
  • noun A small rod-shaped part of a horse's bridle coming under the eye.
  • To treat with a feast or rich entertainment.
  • To feast; regale one's self with good eating and drinking; fare daintily.
  • To take part in a light refection after a feast. See banquet, n., 2.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To treat with a banquet or sumptuous entertainment of food; to feast.
  • noun A feast; a sumptuous entertainment of eating and drinking; often, a complimentary or ceremonious feast, followed by speeches.
  • noun obsolete A dessert; a course of sweetmeats; a sweetmeat or sweetmeats.
  • intransitive verb To regale one's self with good eating and drinking; to feast.
  • intransitive verb obsolete To partake of a dessert after a feast.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A large celebratory meal; a feast.
  • verb To participate in a banquet; to feast.
  • verb obsolete To have dessert after a feast.

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

  • verb provide a feast or banquet for
  • noun a ceremonial dinner party for many people
  • noun a meal that is well prepared and greatly enjoyed
  • verb partake in a feast or banquet


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

[Middle English banket, from Old French, banquet, from Old Italian banchetto, from diminutive of banco, bench, of Germanic origin; akin to Old English benc, bench.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English banket, from Middle French banquet, from Italian banchetto ("light repast between meals, snack eaten on a small bench", literally "a small bench"), from banco ("bench"), from Lombardic *bank, *panch (“bench”), from Proto-Germanic *bankiz (“bench”). Akin to Old High German bank, banch ("bench"), Old English benc ("bench"). More at bank, bench.


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  • "As pungent spices began to lose their allure and the Tudor palate woke up to the soft taste of butter, the tingle of citrus and a more pronounced use of nutmeg, the medieval voidée evolved into a final sweet course called, confusingly, the banquet: a profusion of sugary temptations that became one of the most characteristic markers of well-to-do Tudor England."

    --Kate Colquhoun, Taste: The Story of Britain Through Its Cooking (NY: Bloomsbury, 2007), 102-103

    January 9, 2017