AskDefine | Define pungency

Dictionary Definition



1 wit having a sharp and caustic quality; "he commented with typical pungency"; "the bite of satire" [syn: bite]
2 a strong odor or taste property; "the pungency of mustard"; "the sulfurous bite of garlic"; "the sharpness of strange spices" [syn: bite, sharpness]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • /ˈpʌndʒənsi/


  1. The state of being pungent.
  2. A foul odor.

Related terms

Extensive Definition

Pungency is a sharp and biting sensory impression. Regarding chili peppers, it refers to a scientific equivalent of the Scoville scale of measuring spicyness.


The pungent feeling caused by allyl isothiocyanate, capsaicin, piperine, and allicin is caused by activation of the heat and acidity sensing TRPC ion channel TRPC1 on pain sensing nociceptors.
pungency in Spanish: Picante
pungency in Japanese: 辛味
pungency in Chinese: 辣

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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