Intense, vehement, fierce, exquisite, violent are comparable when meaning extreme in degree, power, or effect.
Although several of them often are used interchangeably without clear distinction, they can be employed in ways that reveal many differences in implications and applications.
Intense is especially appropriate when the idea of great depth (as in quality, reach, or effect) is to be implied. In such use intense may apply to thoughts or thinking, to feeling or emotion, to such an outstanding quality or character as color, brilliancy, or tone, or to something that suggests a straining or a being strained (as in the attainment of an end or effect).
Vehement and fierce (see also FIERCE ) suggest a manifestation of abundant energy or force, and connote, fierce to a greater degree than vehement, ardency, impetuosity, or urgency.
Exquisite (see also CHOICE ) raises the implications of intense to a point suggesting an extreme near to consummateness or completeness. In this sense it has been applied indifferently to things good or bad but often with the result that, when applied to such things as cleanliness, some feelings, judgment, or color which may be called good, (its meaning is taken as equal to that of exquisite at CHOICE ); thus, although exquisite cleanliness may mean cleanliness so extreme that it suggests immoderateness, it is usually thought of as cleanliness so perfect that it gives joy to the fastidious. Consequently, exquisite in this sense is more often applied to what is felt or apprehended keenly or acutely.
Violent (for senses of acting with or caused by violence (compare violence under FORCE )) implies immoderate strength or force and, usually, the exceeding of normal bounds even in something that is strong or forcible; the term need not impute a disagreeable quality to that to which it is applied, but the possibility of this implication is more frequent than in the other terms.