Definitions

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

  • noun A tree (Durio zibethinus) of Southeast Asia, bearing edible fruit.
  • noun The fruit of this plant, having a hard prickly rind and soft pulp with a strong odor.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A tree, the Durio Zibethinus.
  • noun The fruit of this tree.

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

  • noun (Bot.) The fruit of the durio. It is oval or globular, and eight or ten inches long. It has a hard prickly rind, containing a soft, cream-colored pulp, of a most delicious flavor and a very offensive odor. The seeds are roasted and eaten like chestnuts.

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

  • noun Any of several trees, genus Durio, of southeast Asia.
  • noun The spiky edible fruit of this tree, known for its unpleasant odor.

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

  • noun huge fruit native to southeastern Asia `smelling like Hell and tasting like Heaven'; seeds are roasted and eaten like nuts
  • noun tree of southeastern Asia having edible oval fruit with a hard spiny rind

Etymologies

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

[Malay, from duri, thorn.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Malay durian, from Proto-Malayic *duri-an, from Proto-Western Malayo-Polynesian *duʀi-an.

Examples

Comments

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  • Once you get past the smell of this fruit, it is really quite tasty! Hold your nose and take a bite. An expensive Thai delicacy!

    December 8, 2007

  • I liked those lists of regulations on the back of hotel doors in Indonesia saying things like no cooking allowed in the room, no guests after 11pm, and no durians under any circumstances!

    How would you describe a durian pomegranate?

    December 8, 2007

  • A durian pomegranate? That's taking hybridization way too far!

    December 8, 2007

  • Don't they make countertops out of this?

    January 24, 2008

  • Interesting usage that describes this fruit:

    "'Some people eat them,' remarked van Buren, and then he cried 'Take care.' The durian fell with a heavy thump, an object the size and shape of a coconut but covered with strong thickset spikes... 'Ugly spikes: I have had several patients with dangerous lacerated wounds from a durian falling on their heads. The orang-utang opens them, however, spikes, coriaceous skin and all. This one is quite ripe, I am happy to say. Try a piece.'

    "'Stephen realized that the smell of decay came not from their dissection but from the fruit, and it was not without a certain effort that he overcame his reluctance. 'Oh,' said he a moment later, 'how extraordinarily good; and what an extraordinary contradiction between the senses of smell and taste. I had supposed them to be inseparably allied. How I applaud the orang-utang's discrimination.'"

    --Patrick O'Brian, The Thirteen Gun Salute, 190–191

    March 4, 2008

  • Ha! I love the last sentence in that quote!

    March 4, 2008

  • The trick is to store it in the fridge. Cold = less odour. Though I think people exaggerate how "bad" durians smell.

    June 14, 2008

  • I think O'Brian's talking through his clacker. They taste pretty much as they smell, a hashmagandy of spaghetti, coffee and sweet tamarind flavours. Overrated.

    June 14, 2008

  • Didn't they sing "Hungry Like the Wolf?"

    Didn't they sing "Hungry Like the Wolf?"

    June 15, 2008

  • How I applaud the orang-utang's discrimination.

    October 20, 2008