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olfactory

[ol-fak-tuh-ree, -tree, ohl-]
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adjective
  1. of or relating to the sense of smell: olfactory organs.
noun, plural ol·fac·to·ries.
  1. Usually olfactories. an olfactory organ.
  2. olfactory nerve.

Origin of olfactory

1650–60; < Latin olfactōrius, equivalent to olfac(ere) to smell at, sniff (ol(ēre) to smell (akin to odor) + facere to make, do) + -tōrius -tory1
Related formsol·fac·to·ri·ly, adverbnon·ol·fac·to·ry, adjective, noun, plural non·ol·fac·to·ries.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for olfactory

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Do odors impress some olfactory centre with images of the thing emitting them?

    The Damned Thing

    Ambrose Bierce

  • A strong odour of tobacco was wafted to his olfactory sense.

    My Novel, Complete

    Edward Bulwer-Lytton

  • I do not know, although I assert that they are not olfactory organs.

    The Mason-bees

    J. Henri Fabre

  • Their olfactory passage, like that of the Palostraca, must have been ventral.

    The Origin of Vertebrates

    Walter Holbrook Gaskell

  • The brain proper, from which arise only the olfactory and optic nerves.

    The Origin of Vertebrates

    Walter Holbrook Gaskell


British Dictionary definitions for olfactory

olfactory

adjective
  1. of or relating to the sense of smell
noun plural -ries
  1. (usually plural) an organ or nerve concerned with the sense of smell

Word Origin

C17: from Latin olfactus, past participle of olfacere, from olere to smell + facere to make
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

Word Origin and History for olfactory

adj.

1650s, from Latin olfactorius, from olfact-, past participle stem of olfacere "to get the smell of, sniff," from olere "emit a smell, give off a smell of" (see odor) + facere "make" (see factitious).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

olfactory in Medicine

olfactory

(ŏl-făktə-rē, -trē, ōl-)
adj.
  1. Of, relating to, or contributing to the sense of smell.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

olfactory in Science

olfactory

[ŏl-făktə-rē, ōl-]
  1. Relating to or involving the organs or sense of smell.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

olfactory in Culture

olfactory

[(ol-fak-tuh-ree, ohl-fak-tuh-ree)]

A descriptive term for the sense of smell.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.