Share this entry

Share this page


Pronunciation: /smel/

Translation of smell in Spanish:


  • 1.1 countable/numerable (odor) olor (masculine) a nice smell un olor agradable or un buen olor or (in Latin America also/en América Latina también) un rico olor an unpleasant smell un olor desagradable these roses have no smell estas rosas no tienen perfume there's a strong smell of garlic/burning in here huele mucho a ajo/a quemado, hay mucho olor a ajo/a quemado this cheese has a funny smell este queso huele raro or tiene un olor raro there's a smell of defeat in the air el derrotismo se respira en el aire the sweet smell of success la seducción del éxito
    Example sentences
    • Christmas morning came with the smells of pine from candles and coffee in the kitchen.
    • Putrid smells of raw sewage and burning garbage become acceptable after being exposed to these foul scents for a long enough time.
    • As we were driving down these terrible, lumpy, unlit streets we were constantly catching whiffs of different smells.
    1.2 (sniff) [colloquial/familiar] (no plural/sin plural) to have o take a smell at o of sth oler* algo, tomarle el olor a algo (Latin America/América Latina) get a smell of that cheese! ¡cómo apesta ese queso!
    Example sentences
    • He had a smell of the rose, it had a lovely perfume.
    • I love citrus -- but the first time I sprayed this on a card and took a smell I almost passed out. It is STRONG in the first few minutes.
    1.3 uncountable/no numerable (sense of smell) olfato (masculine) a keen/good sense of smell un fino/buen (sentido del) olfato
    Example sentences
    • It's hard to breathe, your nose drips constantly and your sense of smell just isn't what it used to be.
    • All anteaters have an excellent sense of smell; sight and hearing are not as well developed.
    • On the day of the test none of the subjects reported to be suffering from nasal congestion or any other symptom thought to affect their sense of smell.

transitive verb/verbo transitivo (past tense & past participle/pasado y participio pasado smelled or (in British English also/en inglés británico también) , smelt)

  • 1.1 (sense) oler* I can smell freshly baked bread hay olor a pan recién hecho, huele a pan recién hecho, siento olor a pan recién hecho (especially Latin America/especialmente América Latina) we could smell burning olía a quemado, había olor a quemado 1.2 (sniff at) [person] oler*; [animal] olfatear the dog smelled my shoes el perro me olfateó los zapatos 1.3 (recognize) to smell danger olfatear el peligro she can smell trouble a mile off se huele los problemas desde lejos

intransitive verb/verbo intransitivo (past tense & past participle/pasado y participio pasado smelled or (in British English also/en inglés británico también) , smelt)

  • 1.1 (give off odor) oler* that smells good! ¡qué bien huele!, ¡qué rico olor! (Latin America/América Latina) it smells strong/delicious huele fuerte/delicioso, tiene un olor muy fuerte/un olor delicioso it smells off huele a podrido, tiene olor a podrido it smells in here ¡qué mal huele aquí!, ¡qué mal olor hay aquí! (Southern Cone/Cono Sur) your breath smells tienes mal aliento his feet smell le huelen los pies he smells! huele mal frankly, this whole business smells [colloquial/familiar] [pejorative/peyorativo] este asunto huele mal or [colloquial/familiar] huele a chamusquina her perfume smells like roses su perfume huele a rosas or tiene olor a rosas to smell of sth oler* a algo the room smelled of damp la habitación olía a humedad, había olor a humedad en la habitación (Latin America/América Latina) they smell of money [colloquial/familiar] están forrados (de dinero) [colloquial/familiar], están podridos en plata or (Spain/España) podridos de dinero [colloquial/familiar] 1.2 (sniff) [person] oler*; [animal] olfatear 1.3 (sense) oler* I can't smell: I've got a cold no huelo nada, estoy resfriado

Phrasal verbs

smell out

verb + object + adverb, verb + adverb + object/verbo + complemento + adverbio, verbo + adverbio + complemento
1.1 (detect) [dog] olfatear; [trouble] olerse* 1.2 (cause to smell) (British English/inglés británico) [colloquial/familiar] smell up

smell up

verb + adverb + object, verb + object + adverb/verbo + adverbio + complemento, verbo + complemento + adverbio (American English/inglés norteamericano)
[colloquial/familiar] [place] (hacer*) apestar, dejar hediondo

Definition of smell in:

Share this entry

Share this page


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day arpa
harp …
Cultural fact of the day

Radio broadcasting in Spain began in the 1920s. The state-run Radio Nacional de España (RNE) was established during the Civil War. There are many private radio stations and they compete fiercely. Radio personalities are paid huge salaries, out of which they employ the staff for their programs.