ortolan

(redirected from ortolans)
Also found in: Thesaurus, Encyclopedia.

or·to·lan

 (ôr′tl-ən)
n.
1. A small brownish bunting (Emberiza hortulana) of Eurasia and Africa, eaten as a delicacy.
2. Any of several American birds, such as the bobolink and the sora.

[French, from Provençal, gardener, ortolan, from Latin hortulānus, from hortulus, diminutive of hortus, garden; see gher- in Indo-European roots.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

ortolan

(ˈɔːtələn)
n
1. (Animals) Also called: ortolan bunting a brownish Old World bunting, Emberiza hortulana, regarded as a delicacy
2. (Animals) any of various other small birds eaten as delicacies, esp the bobolink
[C17: via French from Latin hortulānus, from hortulus, diminutive of hortus garden]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014

or•to•lan

(ˈɔr tl ən)

n.
an Old World bunting, Emberiza hortulana, esteemed as a table delicacy.
[1625–60; < French, Middle French < Italian literally, gardener]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.ortolan - brownish Old World bunting often eaten as a delicacyortolan - brownish Old World bunting often eaten as a delicacy
bunting - any of numerous seed-eating songbirds of Europe or North America
Emberiza, genus Emberiza - Old World buntings
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in classic literature ?
or, the holy blood, I will spit you all like ortolans!"
The Appetite whose coarse clamoring was for the unwholesome viands of the general market and the public refectory shall be cast into eternal famine, whilst that which firmly through civilly insisted on ortolans, caviare, terrapin, anchovies, pates de foie gras and all such Christian comestibles shall flesh its spiritual tooth in the souls of them forever and ever, and wreak its divine thirst upon the immortal parts of the rarest and richest wines ever quaffed here below.
Rubbing his hands, he told them the adventures of the day: how he had come upon poor old Jackson combing his moustache before the glass in the office, little expecting his descent, had put him through such a morning's work as seldom came his way; then treated him to a lunch of champagne and ortolans; paid a call upon Mrs.
"This," she remarked, with a little satisfied sigh as she selected an ortolan, "is a very satisfactory place to be carried off to.
Within an hour the guests were seated around a board which creaked under the great pasties and joints of meat, varied by those more dainty dishes in which the French excelled, the spiced ortolan and the truffled beccaficoes.
With this, he had likewise that distinguishing taste, which serves to direct men in their choice of the object or food of their several appetites; and this taught him to consider Sophia as a most delicious morsel, indeed to regard her with the same desires which an ortolan inspires into the soul of an epicure.
It was a plate of ortolans, the delicate, endangered French songbirds.
The venue says 'two of Belfast's noisiest bands THVS & Ortolans meet their North Coast counterparts, Little Arcadia & Black Wave.
Hume declared in 1742, "Nor is a porter less greedy of money, which he spends on bacon and brandy, than a courtier, who purchases champagne and ortolans [little songbirds rated a delicacy].
Considering the European never-ending taste for eating little songbirds, like France's ortolans, the painting would not have proven a bit controversial.