The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Taste \Taste\, n.
1. The act of tasting; gustation.
2. A particular sensation excited by the application of a
substance to the tongue; the quality or savor of any
substance as perceived by means of the tongue; flavor; as,
the taste of an orange or an apple; a bitter taste; an
acid taste; a sweet taste.
3. (Physiol.) The one of the five senses by which certain
properties of bodies (called their taste, savor, flavor)
are ascertained by contact with the organs of taste.
Note: Taste depends mainly on the contact of soluble matter
with the terminal organs (connected with branches of
the glossopharyngeal and other nerves) in the papillae
on the surface of the tongue. The base of the tongue is
considered most sensitive to bitter substances, the
point to sweet and acid substances.
4. Intellectual relish; liking; fondness; -- formerly with
of, now with for; as, he had no taste for study.
I have no taste
Of popular applause. --Dryden.
5. The power of perceiving and relishing excellence in human
performances; the faculty of discerning beauty, order,
congruity, proportion, symmetry, or whatever constitutes
excellence, particularly in the fine arts and
belles-letters; critical judgment; discernment.
6. Manner, with respect to what is pleasing, refined, or in
accordance with good usage; style; as, music composed in
good taste; an epitaph in bad taste.
7. Essay; trial; experience; experiment. --Shak.
8. A small portion given as a specimen; a little piece tasted
or eaten; a bit. --Bacon.
9. A kind of narrow and thin silk ribbon.
Syn: Savor; relish; flavor; sensibility; gout.
Usage: Taste, Sensibility, Judgment. Some consider
taste as a mere sensibility, and others as a simple
exercise of judgment; but a union of both is requisite
to the existence of anything which deserves the name.
An original sense of the beautiful is just as
necessary to aesthetic judgments, as a sense of right
and wrong to the formation of any just conclusions on
moral subjects. But this "sense of the beautiful" is
not an arbitrary principle. It is under the guidance
of reason; it grows in delicacy and correctness with
the progress of the individual and of society at
large; it has its laws, which are seated in the nature
of man; and it is in the development of these laws
that we find the true "standard of taste."
What, then, is taste, but those internal powers,
Active and strong, and feelingly alive
To each fine impulse? a discerning sense
Of decent and sublime, with quick disgust
From things deformed, or disarranged, or gross
In species? This, nor gems, nor stores of gold,
Nor purple state, nor culture, can bestow,
But God alone, when first his active hand
Imprints the secret bias of the soul.
Taste buds, or Taste goblets (Anat.), the flask-shaped
end organs of taste in the epithelium of the tongue. They
are made up of modified epithelial cells arranged somewhat
like leaves in a bud.