[ stench ]
/ stɛntʃ /


an offensive smell or odor; stink.
a foul quality.

Nearby words

  1. stemware,
  2. stemwinder,
  3. stemwinding,
  4. sten,
  5. sten gun,
  6. stench trap,
  7. stencil,
  8. stencilize,
  9. stendhal,
  10. stengah

Origin of stench

before 900; Middle English; Old English stenc odor (good or bad); akin to stink

Related formsstench·ful, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for stench

British Dictionary definitions for stench


/ (stɛntʃ) /


a strong and extremely offensive odour; stink

Word Origin for stench

Old English stenc; related to Old Saxon, Old High German stank; see stink

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 stench



Old English stenc "a smell" (either pleasant or unpleasant), from Proto-Germanic *stankwiz (cf. Old Saxon stanc, Old High German stanch, German stank). Related to stincan "emit a smell" (see stink) as drench is to drink. The notion of "evil smell" predominated from c.1200.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper