Definition of ortolan in English:

ortolan

(also ortolan bunting)

noun

  • A small Eurasian songbird that was formerly eaten as a delicacy, the male having an olive-green head and yellow throat.

    • ‘Dali was quite impressed, though he said he himself only ate ‘food with faces’ which meant fish and ortolans.’
    • ‘After their heads have been cut or bitten off, ortolans are eaten whole (bones and all) from underneath a napkin - to hide the shame of such cruelty and gluttony from the sight of God.’
    • ‘The ortolan was so prized as a delicacy that it was almost hunted into extinction.’
    • ‘Like Otto's thin-crusted, griddle-cooked pizza, possibly the most controversial foodstuff to hit Gotham since Le Cirque's ortolans.’
    • ‘We used our data to test whether long-distance movements in the ortolan bunting occurred before males became territorial (natal dispersal) or during adult life (breeding dispersal).’

Origin

Early 16th century: from French, from Provençal, literally gardener, based on a diminutive of Latin hortus garden.

Pronunciation:

ortolan

/ˈɔːt(ə)lən/