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reek

[reek] /rik/
noun
1.
a strong, unpleasant smell.
2.
vapor or steam.
verb (used without object)
3.
to smell strongly and unpleasantly.
4.
to be strongly pervaded with something unpleasant or offensive.
5.
to give off steam, smoke, etc.
6.
to be wet with sweat, blood, etc.
verb (used with object)
7.
to give off; emit; exude.
8.
to expose to or treat with smoke.
Origin of reek
900
before 900; (noun) Middle English rek(e), Old English rēc smoke; cognate with German rauch, Dutch rook, Old Norse reykr; (v.) Middle English reken to smoke, steam, Old English rēocan
Related forms
reeker, noun
reekingly, adverb
reeky, adjective
Synonyms
5. steam, smoke, fume.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for reeking
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The man was reeking with sweat, exhausted and in mortal fear.

    Ambrotox and Limping Dick Oliver Fleming
  • We found ourselves in rather a big room, reeking with the smell of tobacco.

    My Double Life Sarah Bernhardt
  • They turn faith into pietism, sanctity into morality, and righteousness into a reeking prurience.

    Suspended Judgments John Cowper Powys
  • How can you expect me to love you, now that you are reeking with the blood of Camille?

    Therese Raquin Emile Zola
  • A big coughing mass, reeking of carrion, bounded past him up the hill, and he followed discreetly.

    The Day's Work, Volume 1 Rudyard Kipling
  • Think of air not reeking with gasolene and a street safe to cross at any time!

    Tales of Fishes Zane Grey
  • Oatmeal simmered on a reeking oil-stove in a corner of the room.

  • Cappen took the girl's hand and followed her into a pitchy, reeking dark.

    The Valor of Cappen Varra Poul William Anderson
British Dictionary definitions for reeking

reek

/riːk/
verb
1.
(intransitive) to give off or emit a strong unpleasant odour; smell or stink
2.
(intransitive) often foll by of. to be permeated (by); be redolent (of): the letter reeks of subservience
3.
(transitive) to treat with smoke; fumigate
4.
(transitive) (mainly dialect) to give off or emit (smoke, fumes, vapour, etc)
noun
5.
a strong offensive smell; stink
6.
(mainly dialect) smoke or steam; vapour
Derived Forms
reeking, adjective
reekingly, adverb
reeky, adjective
Word Origin
Old English rēocan; related to Old Frisian riāka to smoke, Old High German rouhhan, Old Norse rjūka to smoke, steam
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for reeking

reek

n.

Old English rec (Anglian), riec (West Saxon), "smoke from burning material," probably from a Scandinavian source, cf. Old Norse reykr, Danish rǿg, Swedish rök "smoke, steam," from Proto-Germanic *raukiz (cf. Old Frisian rek, Middle Dutch rooc, Old High German rouh, German Rauch "smoke, steam"), from PIE *reug- "to vomit, belch;" also "smoke, cloud." Sense of "stench" is attested 1650s, via the notion of "that which rises" (cf. reek (v.)).

v.

Old English recan (Anglian), reocan (West Saxon) "emit smoke," from Proto-Germanic *reukanan (cf. Old Frisian reka "smoke," Middle Dutch roken, Dutch rieken "to smoke," Old High German riohhan "to smoke, steam," German rauchen "to smoke," riechen "to smell").

Originally a strong verb, with past tense reac, past participle gereocen, but occasionally showing weak conjugation in Old English. Meaning "to emit smoke;" meaning "to emit a bad smell" is recorded from 1710 via sense "be heated and perspiring" (early 15c.). Related: Reeked; reeking.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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