Definition of mephitic in English:



  • (especially of a gas or vapour) foul-smelling; noxious.

    ‘the cloud of mephitic vapours lingered above our heads’
    • ‘As I delved into the brittle and mephitic pages, my skepticism dropped away like scales from my eyes.’
    • ‘The revelation gave a new frisson to such descriptions as that of Silas Wegg, stumping triumphantly over the mounds, his wooden leg puncturing the surface crust, leaving a trail of mephitic vapours behind him.’
    • ‘Black's student Daniel Rutherford called this gas mephitic air instead: mephitis is a noxious emission in legend, thought to emanate from the earth and cause pestilence.’
    • ‘But why did all become so nasty in the last few years, so raucous, so mephitic?’
    foul-smelling, evil-smelling, stinking, stinking to high heaven, reeking, fetid, malodorous, pungent, acrid, rank, putrid, noxious
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Early 17th century: from late Latin mephiticus, from mephitis noxious exhalation.