- a distinctive odor, especially when agreeable: the scent of roses.
- an odor left in passing, by means of which an animal or person may be traced.
- a track or trail as or as if indicated by such an odor: The dogs lost the scent and the prisoner escaped.
- the sense of smell: a remarkably keen scent.
- small pieces of paper dropped by the hares in the game of hare and hounds.
- to perceive or recognize by or as if by the sense of smell: to scent trouble.
- to fill with an odor; perfume.
- to hunt by the sense of smell, as a hound.
Origin of scent
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for scenting
At this Chaigneux, scenting a loan, collapsed into the most lavish thanks.The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete
It was a delightful anticipation--like scenting a new fancy drink.
Their great ears were erected and their trunks outstretched as if scenting the air.The Cat of Bubastes
G. A. Henty
The girl, scenting something strange, was already at his elbow.The Wild Geese
Stanley John Weyman
We were no sooner in than MacLachlan was scenting round and into this little house.John Splendid
- a distinctive smell, esp a pleasant one
- a smell left in passing, by which a person or animal may be traced
- a trail, clue, or guide
- an instinctive ability for finding out or detecting
- another word (esp Brit) for perfume
- (tr) to recognize or be aware of by or as if by the smell
- (tr) to have a suspicion of; detectI scent foul play
- (tr) to fill with odour or fragrance
- (intr) (of hounds, etc) to hunt by the sense of smell
- to smell (at)the dog scented the air
Word Origin and History for scenting
late 14c., sent "to find the scent of," from Old French sentir "to feel, smell, touch, taste; realize, perceive; make love to," from Latin sentire " to feel, perceive, sense, discern, hear, see" (see sense (n.)).
Originally a hunting term. The -c- appeared 17c., perhaps by influence of ascent, descent, etc., or by influence of science. This was a tendency in early Modern English, cf. scythe, and also scite, scituate. Figurative use from 1550s. Transitive sense "impregnate with an odor, perfume" is from 1690s. Related: Scented; scenting.
late 14c., "scent, smell, what can be smelled" (as a means of pursuit by a hound), from scent (v.). Almost always applied to agreeable odors.
Idioms and Phrases with scenting
see throw off, def. 3.