- to draw air through the nose in short, audible inhalations.
- to clear the nose by so doing; sniffle.
- to smell by short inhalations.
- to show disdain, contempt, etc., by or as by sniffing.
- to perceive by or as by smelling: to sniff a scandal.
- to inhale through the nose: to sniff the air.
- an act of sniffing; a single, short, audible inhalation.
- the sound made by such an act.
- a scent or odor perceived: a sniff of perfume.
Origin of sniff
Examples from the Web for sniff
If Letizia did know how to sniff out a media rat in her camp, it was undoubtedly due to her professional training as a journalist.Meet the New Queen of Spain - 41-Year Old Divorcee And Commoner Letizia Ortiz
June 2, 2014
Duane and Dicky lope backstage afterwards to “do some sniff,” as Dicky terms it.Stacks: Hitting the Note with the Allman Brothers Band
March 15, 2014
Late in the afternoon, the day being warm, I raised the window again and leaned out to get a sniff of air.Read ‘The King in Yellow,’ the ‘True Detective’ Reference That’s the Key to the Show
Robert W. Chambers
February 20, 2014
Delachaise, a pit bull mix, made it across the field on her first try, but had to stop and sniff the camera.‘The Puppy Bowl’: The Super Bowl’s Fiercest Rival
February 2, 2014
But is their sniff strong enough for an entire legal system to rest on?Dog Orders Cavity Search; Lawsuits Ensue
November 14, 2013
He did not speak, but he made an inarticulate noise between a grunt and a sniff.Quaint Courtships
He just stuck his nose into old Hagar's wikiup—and one sniff seemed to be about all he wanted.Good Indian
B. M. Bower
He tried to sniff noses with her, but she retreated playfully and coyly.White Fang
Captain Zelotes' only comment was a sniff or snort, or combination of both.
Albert sniffed suspiciously, but no odor of alcohol rewarded the sniff.
- to inhale through the nose, usually in short rapid audible inspirations, as for the purpose of identifying a scent, for clearing a congested nasal passage, or for taking a drug or intoxicating fumes
- (when intr, often foll by at) to perceive or attempt to perceive (a smell) by inhaling through the nose
- the act or sound of sniffing
- a smell perceived by sniffing, esp a faint scent
Word Origin and History for sniff
mid-14c., of imitative origin; possibly related to snyvelen (see snivel). As an expression of scorn or contempt from 1729. As a synonym for smell (v.) it dates from 1845. In reference to cocaine from 1925. Related: Sniffed; sniffing.
1767, from sniff (v.); the scornful sense is from 1859.