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  1. angliholic's Avatar
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    #1

    Smile smell a rat

    I smell a rat in this room.
    I smell something fishy in this room.



    Are the above two statements referring to the same thing? If not, what are the differences? Thanks.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #2

    Re: smell a rat

    Context here is important.

    If you say you smell something "in a room", it does rather indicate that it is something you can really smell.

    I can smell a rat OR I smell something fishy [going on] would generally be used without location.

  2. angliholic's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: smell a rat

    Thanks for the correction, Anglika.
    But what do they mean exactly? Thanks again in advance.


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #4

    Re: smell a rat

    You suspect something is going on and are not sure what it is.

    "I smell a rat when Joe keeps disappearing from the office for hours at a time"
    "I can smell something fishy about the contract he has given me."

    It derives from the way that the smell of putrefying matter pervades a space, but you cannot identify exactly where it is coming from.
    Last edited by Anglika; 20-Sep-2007 at 12:15. Reason: sticky key on the keyboard

  3. angliholic's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: smell a rat

    Thanks, Anglika.

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