|1.||a distinctive smell, esp a pleasant one|
|2.||a smell left in passing, by which a person or animal may be traced|
|3.||a trail, clue, or guide|
|4.||an instinctive ability for finding out or detecting|
|5.||another word (esp Brit) for perfume|
|6.||(tr) to recognize or be aware of by or as if by the smell|
|7.||(tr) to have a suspicion of; detect: I scent foul play|
|8.||(tr) to fill with odour or fragrance|
|9.||(intr) (of hounds, etc) to hunt by the sense of smell|
|10.||to smell (at): the dog scented the air|
|[C14: from Old French sentir to sense, from Latin sentīre to feel; see |
see throw off, def. 3.
the property of certain substances, in very small concentrations, to stimulate chemical sense receptors that sample the air or water surrounding an animal. In insects and other invertebrates and in aquatic animals, the perception of small chemical concentrations often merges with perception via contact of heavy concentrations (taste), and with other chemoreceptive specializations. See also smell.
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