late 14c., "delightfulness; fastidiousness; quality of being addicted to sensuous pleasure," from delicate + abstract noun suffix -cy. Meaning "fine food, a dainty viand" is from early 15c. Meaning "fineness, softness, tender loveliness" is from 1580s; that of "weakness of constitution" is from 1630s.
"things dainty and gratifying to the palate," early 15c., plural of delicacy in the "fine food" sense.
"morbid softness of tissue," 1650s, from Latinized form of Greek malakia "softness, delicacy, effeminacy," from malakos "soft," from PIE root *mel- (1) "soft." Related: Malacic.
1570s, "to ripen, bring to maturity" (transitive), from mellow (adj.). Intransitive sense of "become soft, be ripened" is from 1590s. Transferred sense of "give richness, flavor, or delicacy to" is from 1590s. Related: Mellowed; mellowing.
"pedantic woman, woman aiming at refined delicacy of language and taste," a French word attested in English from 1727, from French précieuse, noun use of fem. of précieux (see precious (adj.)); especially as lampooned in Molière's comedy "Les Précieuses ridicules" (1659).
1877, "delicacies, articles of fine food," American English, from German delikatessen, plural of delikatesse "a delicacy, fine food," from French délicatesse (1560s), from délicat "fine," from Latin delicatus "alluring, delightful, dainty" (see delicate). As a store where such things are sold, 1901, short for delicatessen shop.
"stomach of a bird," late 14c., from Old French gisier "entrails, giblets (of a bird)" (13c., Modern French gésier), probably from Vulgar Latin *gicerium, a dissimilation of Latin gigeria (neuter plural) "cooked entrails of a fowl," a delicacy in ancient Rome, from PIE *yekwr- "liver" (see hepatitis). The unetymological -d was added 1500s (perhaps on analogy of -ard words). Later extended to other animals, and, jocularly, to human beings (1660s).