Definition of odour in English:

odour

(US odor)

noun

  • 1A distinctive smell, especially an unpleasant one.

    ‘the odour of cigarette smoke’
    • ‘One can almost detect the odors emanating from the tiny industries.’
    • ‘"Choline salts have been known to produce an offensive, fishy body odor, " says Wright.’
    • ‘A null response was assigned if the crab did not respond to the odor plume.’
    • ‘One can almost smell body odor coming off the page.’
    • ‘He sighed, noting then the odors wafting in from the kitchen.’
    • ‘Chlorine odor is detected at levels between 0.2 and 3.5 ppm.’
    • ‘Dandruff and foot odor are caused in part by yeast that live on the skin.’
    • ‘Also, some species can emit a strong, foul odor if handled - we found this out firsthand.’
    • ‘And in this alternative existence did you still have the same noxious body odor?’
    • ‘One concern that many people have is what to use to eliminate odor on furniture.’
    • ‘During that time, the officer had smelled the odour of alcohol on the accused's breath.’
    • ‘They have a characteristic musty odor that is detectable when large numbers are present or when the bugs are crushed.’
    • ‘Instead, use the feedback to find things that eliminate odors for good.’
    • ‘Before drifting off, I detected an odor emanating from the vestibule of Ido's tent.’
    • ‘Only when the deity smells the odour of sacrifice rightly made does he respond.’
    • ‘He could smell the familiar odour of rotting foliage in his nostrils.’
    • ‘They have a very distinctive pungent odor when crushed.’
    • ‘Occupants also had noticed a strong unpleasant odor resembling sewage.’
    • ‘The black shafts were right in front of her nose and she noticed a foul odor coming from them.’
    • ‘Often the first indication that a microorganism problem exists is a characteristic musty odor.’
    smell, scent, aroma, perfume, fragrance, bouquet, savour, nose, tang, essence, redolence
    View synonyms
  • 2A lingering quality or impression attaching to something.

    ‘an odour of suspicion’
    • ‘That's why he has always stuck by Mr Byers, despite the bad political odour which has surrounded him for so long.’
    • ‘The place still had an aura, and an odor, of corrupt bureaucrats and their intellectual lackeys about it.’
    • ‘The odor of failure and confusion linger over the Duchy like the smell of rotting flesh.’
    • ‘Judging by auras and odors, the woman and one man were witches.’
    • ‘It's a bit of an art, because you have to ensure a silent evacuation and a quick disassociation from any lingering odours.’
    atmosphere, air, aura, quality, spirit, flavour, savour, emanation, hint, suggestion, impression, whiff, ambience, tone
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1mass noun, with adjective The state of being held in a specified regard.
      ‘a decade of bad odour between Britain and the European Community’
      • ‘Let us begin by asking how it came about that the tradition fell into bad odor among us.’

Phrases

  • be in good (or bad) odour with

    • informal Be in (or out of) favour with (someone)

      ‘I want him in good odour again with his king’
      • ‘Well, the only real explanation is that Britain is in very bad odour with the Greeks because of the Elgin Marbles.’
      • ‘I made a point of arguing this case in the morning editorial meetings, and that put me in a very bad odour with Kevin Marsh, the editor.’
      • ‘The party does not want to be in bad odour with the United States again.’
      • ‘For a long time Lucas was in bad odour with military veterans.’
  • odour of sanctity

    • 1A sweet odour reputedly emitted by the bodies of saints at or near death.

      • ‘As with the odour of sanctity, the stench of sin was believed to be particularly noticeable when the soul left the body at the time of death.’
      1. 1.1A state of holiness.
        • ‘His manual for organizers points out that mobilizing the religious community imparts the odor of sanctity to a left-wing social agenda.’
        • ‘Made dogma in the Christian doctrine of the ‘odor of sanctity,’ that moral interpretation of corrupt and incorruptible flesh permeated secular culture as well.’

Origin

Middle English: from Anglo-Norman French, from Latin odor ‘smell, scent’.

Pronunciation

odour

/ˈəʊdə/