notice/smell

mimi2

Senior Member
vietnam vietnamese
"Can you notice/smell that strange perfume she is wearing?"
I think "smell" is correct but I don't like this verb. I prefer "notice".
Is it acceptable?
Thanks.
 
  • coiffe

    Senior Member
    USA
    American English
    "Notice" is perfect in that context. But I would say "Did you notice," not "Can you notice."
     

    roxcyn

    Senior Member
    USA
    American English [AmE]
    I think they both sound good, but I would use smell rather than notice. I think notice is okay, though.
     

    roxcyn

    Senior Member
    USA
    American English [AmE]
    "Notice" is perfect in that context. But I would say "Did you notice," not "Can you notice."
    If the person is still around you: Then you can use "Can (or Do) you notice/smell...?

    If the person has left and is not around you: Then you can use: "Did you notice/smell..?"
     

    coiffe

    Senior Member
    USA
    American English
    coiffe.
    If I say this sentence, it implies that I don't like this odour. I notice "in hell". Is it a negative sentence?
    Roxcyn is exactly right. It's more than negative. It would be closer to exasperation. However, it's obvious nobody would ever say "odoriferous effluence," except maybe a voice in a Monty Python skit. (It's just flamboyant BS.) So if you actually ever heard this, which you wouldn't, you might in fact conclude that the speaker was not at all angry, but just joking around.

    Also a point: odoriferous means aromatic, and it means a strong odor -- but not necessarily a bad odor.

    So I would say there is ambiguity to the sentence. It's possible to throw "in hell" into a sentence and not be negative -- but it would be more safe to assume negativity.
     

    mimi2

    Senior Member
    vietnam vietnamese
    Roxcyn is exactly right. It's more than negative. It would be closer to exasperation. However, it's obvious nobody would ever say "odoriferous effluence," except maybe a voice in a Monty Python skit. (It's just flamboyant BS.) So if you actually ever heard this, which you wouldn't, you might in fact conclude that the speaker was not at all angry, but just joking around.

    Also a point: odoriferous means aromatic, and it means a strong odor -- but not necessarily a bad odor.

    So I would say there is ambiguity to the sentence. It's possible to throw "in hell" into a sentence and not be negative -- but it would be more safe to assume negativity.
    Thank you, coiffe.
    I feel the sense of humour in this sentence.
    Very interesting, very fun.:)
     

    coiffe

    Senior Member
    USA
    American English
    Thank you, coiffe.
    I feel the sense of humour in this sentence.
    Very interesting, very fun.:)
    Mimi, good you sense the humor. There are a couple of telltale signs (I'm imagining this from the perspective of a non-native speaker). First, the two words "odoriferous effluence" are rather long, and probably strange. If you have a well-developed b***sh*t detector, you'll already be suspicious. Then if you pronounce the phrase, you'll notice it's excellent alliteration. The labiodental fricatives (the "f" sounds) combine with the hiss at the end to make a very pleasing series of sounds. Too pleasing, in fact. You can almost visualize a face working hard to produce this fabulous sounding sentence.

    Everything about the sentence calls attention to itself; that's why it's ultimately fraudulent. It has to be a joke. It is a joke.

    As for your original sentence, another reaction you might hear in informal speech is: "Catch a whiff of that!" A whiff is a scent on the breeze (or in the air).

    cheers :)
     

    mimi2

    Senior Member
    vietnam vietnamese
    Thank you, coiffe, for this information.
    It stimulates my interest in English.
    Thanks.
     

    coiffe

    Senior Member
    USA
    American English
    Oh, and (always these afterthoughts) "Catch a whiff" is not judgmental, the speaker could be negative or positive. Probably negative, but not absolutely for sure --
     

    hly2004

    Banned
    chinese
    I think you could smell something without noticing it, expecially something ordorl
    For example: someone walked by, I smelt her perfume, but I might not notice it, perhaps because of its being a commonly used perfume that does not have a distictive smell. a smell of a perfume that could let people notice (mostly the lingering smell) must be quite expensive.:)
     
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