[ oh-der ]
See synonyms for: odorodorless on Thesaurus.com

  1. the property of a substance that activates the sense of smell: to have an unpleasant odor.

  2. a sensation perceived by the sense of smell; scent.

  1. an agreeable scent; fragrance.

  2. a disagreeable smell.

  3. a quality or property characteristic or suggestive of something: An odor of suspicion surrounded his testimony.

  4. repute: in bad odor with the whole community.

  5. Archaic. something that has a pleasant scent.

Origin of odor

First recorded in 1250–1300; Middle English, from Old French, from Latin
  • Also especially British, o·dour .

synonym study For odor

3. 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.

Other words for odor

Other words from odor

  • o·dor·ful, adjective
  • o·dor·less, adjective

Words Nearby odor

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use odor in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for odor


/ (ˈəʊdə) /

  1. the US spelling of odour

Derived forms of odor

  • 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