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90s Slang You Should Know


[oh-der] /ˈoʊ dər/
the property of a substance that activates the sense of smell:
to have an unpleasant odor.
a sensation perceived by the sense of smell; scent.
an agreeable scent; fragrance.
a disagreeable smell.
a quality or property characteristic or suggestive of something:
An odor of suspicion surrounded his testimony.
in bad odor with the whole community.
Archaic. something that has a pleasant scent.
Also, especially British, odour.
Origin of odor
1250-1300; Middle English < Old French < Latin
Related forms
odorful, adjective
odorless, adjective
3. aroma, redolence, perfume. Odor, smell, scent, stench all refer to sensations perceived through the nose by the olfactory nerves. Odor and smell in literal contexts are often interchangeable. Figuratively, odor also usually occurs in positive contexts: the odor of sanctity. Smell is the most general and neutral of these two terms, deriving connotation generally from the context in which it is used: the tempting smell of fresh-baked bread; the rank smell of rotting vegetation. In figurative contexts smell may be either positive or negative: the sweet smell of success; a strong smell of duplicity pervading the affair. Scent refers either to delicate and pleasing aromas or to faint, barely perceptible smells: the scent of lilacs on the soft spring breeze; deer alarmed by the scent of man. Stench is strongly negative, referring both literally and figuratively to what is foul, sickening, or repulsive: the stench of rotting flesh; steeped in the stench of iniquity and treason. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for odorless
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • There are many varieties of scented leaved geraniums, and these mixed with the odorless blossoms are almost an equivalent.

    Talks about Flowers. M. D. Wellcome
  • I have had a number of inquiries whether my skunks were odorless.

    Fur Farming For Profit Hermon Basil Laymon
  • Such a lamp is safe, odorless and will not blacken the work in the least as in the case of kerosene or gasoline.

  • I will say they are not and it is not necessary to make them odorless.

    Fur Farming For Profit Hermon Basil Laymon
  • Oxygen is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas, slightly heavier than air.

  • Sometimes I think they should invent a brass polish that is odorless.

    Under the Law Edwina Stanton Babcock
  • Cacti of various kinds vie with one another in producing the most brilliant flowers, odorless but gorgeous.

    Navaho Houses, pages 469-518 Cosmos Mindeleff
British Dictionary definitions for odorless


the US spelling of odour
Derived Forms
odorless, adjective
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 odorless



c.1300, from Anglo-French odour, from Old French odor "smell, perfume, fragrance" (12c., Modern French odeur) and directly from Latin odor "a smell, a scent" (pleasant or disagreeable), from PIE *od- "to smell" (cf. Latin olere "emit a smell, to smell of," with Sabine -l- for -d-; Greek ozein "to smell;" Armenian hotim "I smell;" Lithuanian uodziu "to smell").

Good or bad odor, in reference to repute, estimation, is from 1835. Odor of sanctity (1756) is from French odeur de sainteté (17c.) "sweet or balsamic scent said to be exhaled by the bodies of eminent saints at death or upon disinterment."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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odorless in Medicine

odor o·dor (ō'dər)

  1. The property or quality of a thing that affects, stimulates, or is perceived by the sense of smell.

  2. A sensation, stimulation, or perception of the sense of smell.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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