Translation of "smell" - English-Mandarin Chinese dictionary

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uk /smel/ us /smel/ smelled or UK also smelt, smelled or UK smelt


B1 [ I, L only + adj ] to have a particular quality that others can notice with their noses

My hands smell of onions. 我手上有洋葱味。
That cake smells good. 那蛋糕闻起来不错。
There's something in the fridge that smells mouldy. 冰箱里有东西闻起来发霉了。
Your feet smell (= have an unpleasant smell). Why don't you wash them? 你的脚臭哄哄的,为什么不洗洗呢?

More examples

  • Those toilets smell foul!
  • This milk smells funny.
  • You smell lovely - what's your perfume?
  • He always smells of cigarettes.
  • My armpits were starting to smell.

smell verb (DISCOVER)

B1 [ T ] to notice or discover something using the nose

Come and smell these flowers! 过来闻闻这些花!
Can you smell something burning? 你闻到烧焦味了吗?
[ + (that) ] Didn't you smell (that) the pie was burning? 你没闻到馅饼烧糊了吗?
I can smell something rotten in the bottom of the fridge. 我能闻到冰箱底部有什么东西馊了。

[ T ] informal to know about or be aware of a situation without having to be told about it

Brenda can smell trouble a mile off (= a long time in advance). 布伦达能提前很多意识到麻烦。

More examples

  • I could smell smoke on the night air.
  • I can smell onions cooking.
  • Smell this perfume.
  • I could smell alcohol on his breath.
  • Can you smell gas?

smell verb (ABILITY)

B2 [ I ] to have the ability to notice or discover that a substance is present by using your nose

Humans can't smell as well as dogs. 人的嗅觉不如狗灵敏。
What I hate most about having a cold is not being able to smell. 感冒最让我讨厌的是闻不到气味。

More examples

  • My nose is blocked so I can't smell.
  • If you can't smell, your ability to taste is also impaired.
  • It feels so unnatural not to be able to smell.
  • Not being able to smell has its advantages.
  • Many animals are able to smell better than humans.


uk /smel/ us /smel/


B1 [ C ] the characteristic of something that can be recognized or noticed using the nose

What's your favourite smell? 你最喜欢什么气味?
I love the smell of orange blossoms. 我喜欢橘子花的芳香。
The marketplace was filled with delightful smells. 市场上弥漫着令人愉悦的香味。
There's a delicious smell in here. 这儿有一种很香的气味。
I wish we could get rid of that smell (= bad smell) in the bathroom. 但愿我们能除掉浴室里那种难闻的气味。
the smell of sth literary

the particular character or feeling that someone or something has

She's still enjoying the sweet smell (= pleasant experience) of success after her victory in the world championships. 在世界锦标赛上获胜后,她仍沉浸在胜利的喜悦之中。

More examples

  • the smell of decaying meat
  • The delicious smell of freshly-made coffee came from the kitchen.
  • There was an unpleasant smell coming from the drains.
  • What's that horrible smell?
  • The smell of hospitals always makes my stomach turn.

smell noun (ABILITY)

B2 [ U ] the ability to notice or discover that a substance is present by using your nose

Smell is one of the five senses. 嗅觉是5种感觉官能之一。
Dogs have a very good sense of smell. 狗的嗅觉很灵敏。

More examples

  • Sharks have a highly developed sense of smell.
  • She has a very keen sense of smell.
  • As you get older you tend to lose your sense of smell.
  • He has a very poor sense of smell.
  • Pregnancy can change your sense of smell.

smell noun (DISCOVER)

[ S ] mainly UK the act of putting your nose near something and breathing in so that you can discover its characteristics with your nose

Have a smell of this perfume. 来闻闻这种香水。

(Translation of “smell” from the Cambridge English-Chinese (Simplified) Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)