"pleasing in taste or smell," c. 1200, savourie, originally figurative and spiritual (of virtues, etc.), from Old French savore "tasty, flavorsome" (Modern French savouré), past participle of savourer "to taste" (see savor (n.)). Of food or drink, "tasteful, flavorful," by late 14c. Related: Savoriness. Savorless "without taste, destitute of flavor" is from late 14c.
aromatic evergreen herb, late 14c. (mid-13c. in surnames), savereie, savory, which is ultimately from Latin satureia "savory (n.)," a foreign word of unknown origin. The Middle English word is perhaps an alteration of Old English sæþerie, which apparently is from an Old French development of the Latin word (compare Old French sarree, and, later, savereie). In either case, the form of the word likely was altered along the way by influence of the Middle English or Old French form of savory (adj.). "As with other plant-names of unobvious meaning, the word has suffered much variation in popular speech" [Century Dictionary].
updated on January 08, 2022