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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

A gourmand is a person who takes great pleasure in food. The word has different connotations from the similar word gourmet, which emphasises an individual with a highly refined discerning palate, but in practice the two terms are closely linked, as both imply the enjoyment of good food.

An older usage of the word is to describe a person given to excess in the consumption of food and drink, synonymous with "glutton."

In this latter usage, there is a parallel concern among the French that their word for the appreciation of gourmet cuisine (gourmandise) is historically included in the French Catholic list of the Seven Deadly Sins. With the evolution in the meaning of gourmand (and gourmandise) away from gluttony, towards the appreciation of good food, French culinary proponents are advocating that the Catholic Church update the infamous list to refer to "gloutonnerie" rather than "gourmandise."

The Ligue des Gourmands was founded by Auguste Escoffier in 1912. The Gourmand World Cookbook Awards were created by Edouard Cointreau in 1995.

Usage notes

The French and English usages of this word are false friends. While the English word has evolved to emphasize the excesses of a gourmand, the French word has become more associated with refined tastes in food. See also gourmet which has considerable overlap with the present word.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Gourmand" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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