1

scent

noun \ ˈsent \

Definition of scent

1 :effluvia from a substance that affect the sense of smell: such as
a :an odor left by an animal on a surface passed over
b :a characteristic or particular odor; especially :one that is agreeable
2 a :power of smelling :sense of smell
  • a keen scent
b :power of detection :nose
  • a scent for heresy
3 :a course of pursuit or discovery
  • throw one off the scent
4 :inkling, intimation
  • a scent of trouble
5 :perfume 2
6 :bits of paper dropped in the game of hare and hounds
7 :a mixture prepared for use as a lure in hunting or fishing

scentless

play \ˈsent-ləs\ adjective

Examples of scent in a Sentence

  1. The flower has a wonderful scent.

  2. The dogs followed the fox's scent.

  3. The prisoner escaped because the dogs lost his scent.

Recent Examples of scent from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'scent.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of scent

Middle English sent, from Anglo-French sente, from sentir

scent Synonyms

Synonym Discussion of scent

fragrance, perfume, scent, redolence mean a sweet or pleasant odor. fragrance suggests the odors of flowers or other growing things.
    • the fragrance of pine
perfume may suggest a stronger or heavier odor.
    • the perfume of lilacs
scent is very close to perfume but of wider application because more neutral in connotation.
    • scent-free soaps
redolence implies a mixture of fragrant or pungent odors.
    • the redolence of a forest after a rain
smell, scent, odor, aroma mean the quality that makes a thing perceptible to the olfactory sense. smell implies solely the sensation without suggestion of quality or character.
    • an odd smell permeated the room
scent applies to the characteristic smell given off by a substance, an animal, or a plant.
    • the scent of lilacs
odor may imply a stronger or more readily distinguished scent or it may be equivalent to smell.
    • a cheese with a strong odor
aroma suggests a somewhat penetrating usually pleasant odor.
    • the aroma of freshly ground coffee

Other Hunting and Fishing Terms


2

scent

verb

Definition of scent

transitive verb
1 a :to perceive by the olfactory organs :smell
b :to get or have an inkling of
  • scent trouble
2 :to imbue or fill with odor
  • scented the air with perfume
intransitive verb
1 :to yield an odor of some specified kind
  • this scents of sulfur
; also :to bear indication or suggestions
2 :to use the nose in seeking or tracking prey

Examples of scent in a Sentence

  1. The dog scented a rabbit.

  2. She scented the air with perfume.

Recent Examples of scent from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'scent.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of scent

Middle English senten, from Anglo-French sentir to feel, smell, from Latin sentire to perceive, feel — more at sense

scent Synonyms

Synonyms
incense, odorize, perfume
Antonyms
stink up
Related Words
breathe, drink (in), inhale, respire; snort, snuffle; savor (also savour)
Near Antonyms
deodorize


SCENT Defined for English Language Learners

scent

noun

Definition of scent for English Language Learners

  • : a pleasant smell that is produced by something

  • : a smell that is left by an animal or person and that can be sensed and followed by some animals (such as dogs)

  • : a slight indication of something that is going to happen or that might happen


scent

verb

Definition of scent for English Language Learners

  • : to become aware of (something) by smell

  • : to give (something) a pleasing smell


SCENT Defined for Kids

1

scent

noun \ ˈsent \

Definition of scent for Students

1 :an odor that is given off by someone or something
  • … a little wind … brought a fresh scent of newly turned earth with it.
  • —Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden
2 :power or sense of smell
  • The dog has a keen scent.
3 :a course followed in search or pursuit of something
  • The reporter was on the scent of a story.
4 :1perfume 1

2

scent

verb

Definition of scent for Students

scented; scenting
1 :to become aware of or follow through the sense of smell
  • The dog scented a rabbit.
2 :to get a hint of
  • Aunt Petunia obviously scented danger, too …
  • —J. K. Rowling, Sorcerer's Stone
3 :to fill with an odor :perfume
  • Roses scent the air.


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