scent

noun
\ˈsent \

Definition of scent 

(Entry 1 of 2)

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

2a : 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

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

scent

verb
scented; scenting; scents

Definition of scent (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : 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

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Other Words from scent

Noun

scentless \ ˈsent-​ləs \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for scent

Synonyms: Noun

aroma, balm, bouquet, fragrance, fragrancy, incense, perfume, redolence, spice

Synonyms: Verb

incense, perfume

Antonyms: Noun

reek, stench, stink

Antonyms: Verb

stink up

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Choose the Right Synonym for scent

Noun

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

Examples of scent in a Sentence

Noun

The flower has a wonderful scent. The dogs followed the fox's scent. The prisoner escaped because the dogs lost his scent.

Verb

The dog scented a rabbit. She scented the air with perfume.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The two serve key roles in the business; Lawrence focuses on the creative aspect such as what music is played, the scent, and the overall aesthetic of the hotel rooms. Montana Couser, The Root, "Howard Grads Do It For the Culture With Homage Hospitality Hotels," 3 July 2018 Move around the space (either physically, or just with your eyes), noting the sights, sounds, and scents. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "How to Tap Into Your Own Psychic Abilities," 2 July 2018 Slow down and steep yourself in the colors and scents and touches of everything that surrounds you. Bess Matassa, Teen Vogue, "Monthly Lovescopes July 2018," 2 July 2018 In between shopping and eating—try Grandpa for natty clothes and ahead-of-the-curve scents, and Surfers for unpretentious Swedish-Asian food that local chefs rejoice over—rub shoulders with Skarsgårds at the city’s best nightlife. Andrew Richdale, GQ, "Five Gay Vacation Spots That Are Less Tired Than Fire Island," 21 June 2018 Take in the sights, sounds, scents and scenery on a walking tour of Portugal, a country that should be on everyone's must-visit list. Rosemary Mcclure, latimes.com, "Walk along ancient paths in self-guided tour of northern Portugal," 9 May 2018 That will include luxury theaters, kid-friendly auditoriums and movie houses equipped with 4DX technology, which offer augmented effects such as seat motion, wind and scents. John Hecht, The Hollywood Reporter, "Cinepolis to Open Movie Theaters in Saudi Arabia," 27 Apr. 2018 Bat mothers can find their babies among thousands or millions of other bats by their unique voices and scents. Sheryl Devore, Lake County News-Sun, "Five cool bat facts," 23 Apr. 2018 Strange to think of a form of love going extinct, like a carrier pigeon, a rare tortoise, a lilac or apple whose seeds are not to be found anymore, the scent and taste of the thing long lost, never to be touched again. Longreads, "The Ladies Who Were Famous for Wanting to Be Left Alone," 17 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The hair lightener is scented with Ouai No.6, which smells like coconut and pineapple. Shannon Barbour, The Cut, "Ouai Created a Modern Version of Sun-In," 1 May 2018 Try the biodynamic Alsatian white blend from Barmès-Buecher, or a sunny Picpoul de Pinet with roasted clams casino whose buttery crumb topping was scented with smoky Benton’s bacon. Craig Laban, Philly.com, "Craig LaBan's first bite of the Delaware beaches | A dining guide," 15 June 2018 Sweet and sour brinjal caponata, with chunks of eggplant and curry leaves, is scented with cumin. Ann Trieger Kurland, BostonGlobe.com, "So many chutneys, so many uses," 11 June 2018 Monnich’s kitchen also does a fine job with its charcuterie, especially the coarse-ground chicken-mushroom pâté scented with Madeira. Craig Laban, Philly.com, "The Bercy adds French brasserie sheen to thriving Ardmore scene," 13 July 2018 LAKE AMADOR The Lake Amador Resort continues to release over 1,000 pounds of Mt. Lassen Hatchery rainbow trout per week, and bank anglers are scoring consistent limits with trout dough bait in bright colors scented with garlic. sacbee, "Fishing line: Striper action takes off near Colusa and on Feather River | The Sacramento Bee," 23 Apr. 2018 It’s made of cornstarch and kaolin clay, among a few moisturizing ingredients like shea butter, and is scented with jasmine. Louise Green, SELF, "5 Tips for Avoiding Inner-Thigh Chafing This Summer," 5 July 2018 The contrast of tangy fresh cheese and buttery olive oil, scented with herbs and spices is a contrast everyone loves. Anna Thomas Bates, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Need an easy slam-dunk for a potluck? Try marinated cheese," 4 July 2018 Measure 6 tablespoons scented sugar into a large mixing bowl (for brown-butter pastry). Leah Eskin, chicagotribune.com, "In debate over butter vs. brown butter, brown butter wins in this lemon bar recipe," 7 June 2018

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.

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First Known Use of scent

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for scent

Noun

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

Verb

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

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Learn More about scent

Statistics for scent

Last Updated

10 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for scent

The first known use of scent was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for scent

scent

noun

English Language Learners Definition of scent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: 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

English Language Learners Definition of scent (Entry 2 of 2)

: to become aware of (something) by smell

: to give (something) a pleasing smell

scent

noun
\ˈsent \

Kids Definition of scent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

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.

scent

verb
scented; scenting

Kids Definition of scent (Entry 2 of 2)

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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