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[smel-ee] /ˈsmɛl i/
adjective, smellier, smelliest.
emitting a strong or unpleasant odor; reeking.
Origin of smelly
1860-65; smell + -y1
Related forms
smelliness, noun
Can be confused Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for smelly
  • By that term she means old and smelly, which it is not.
  • One of my dogs tends to get smelly feet after a few weeks, but her coat smells clean, as do the other two dogs.
  • My own maple aroma got me thinking about another smelly mystery.
  • Still, his axiom covers a lot of territory on the human condition, including our somewhat smelly natures.
  • It's a lovely experience to swim in this silky, non-smelly water.
  • We boys used to beg the butcher for old sheep's heads or smelly pieces of meaty bone.
  • They cover their long tails with smelly secretions and wave them in the air to determine which animal is more powerful.
  • Skinny or fat, smelly or poisonous, there are many kinds of frogs.
  • The fruit is so smelly that it isn't allowed in many public places.
  • By the second and third day the wound oozes, becoming a bit sloppy and smelly.
British Dictionary definitions for smelly


adjective smellier, smelliest
having a strong or nasty smell
Derived Forms
smelliness, noun
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 smelly

1854, from smell (n.) + -y (2). Related: Smelliness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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