from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Of, relating to, or resembling mephitis; poisonous or foul-smelling. See Synonyms at poisonous.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. foul-smelling.
  • adj. poisonous.
  • adj. unbearably disgusting

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Tending to destroy life; poisonous; noxious
  • adj. Offensive to the smell.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Pertaining to mephitis; foul; noxious; pestilential; poisonous; stifling.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. of noxious stench from atmospheric pollution


Latin mephiticus, from mephitis mephitis: compare French méphitique. (Wiktionary)


  • This also applies to other poison-theories, e.g. that the disease was due to rotten fish or to "mephitic" gases emanating from the soil.

    Christiaan Eijkman - Nobel Lecture

  • The long curved counter glistens under the flare of the gas; the lines of gaudy bottles gleam like vulgar, sham jewelry; the glare, the glitter, the garish refulgence of the place dazzle the eye, and the sharp acrid whiffs of vile odour fall on the senses with a kind of mephitic influence.

    The Ethics of Drink and Other Social Questions Joints In Our Social Armour

  • "An unexpected opportunity of personally investigating a highly nauseous kind of mephitic vapor drew me and Jones suddenly hither without time to say farewell or make explanations.

    The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 06, No. 35, September, 1860

  • When it comes to the power of a mephitic atmosphere on the training ground, the Germans showed the way forward.

    Note to England's rugby players: embrace Der Aggro | Harry Pearson

  • It was also, I learned, scrolling down, a hellhole manned by human ferrets, with overflowing toilets and mephitic smells that had tragically ruined the honeymoon of vox12populi and Iwantmyrum, who were now exacting revenge by describing their nightmarish experience on every message board they could find.

    You Don't Say?

  • A learned professor at UNB named David Murrell went after me today after a wag posted a message on the mephitic Canadian Coalition for Democracies site yesterday and forged my name to it.

    Archive 2009-02-01

  • And that question was not: Why would anyone want to spend months tramping around the mephitic, reptile-infested and politically dysfunctional northeast coast of South America?

    From Guyana to Guiana

  • “On the day you see a single, midnight feather floating upon the mephitic winds of this your training base, then you will know it is time to open the secret box and read the secret message, and understand everything ... or mostly everything.”

    Part the Eighth: The Meaning of Christmas « Unknowing

  • Taxes will not significantly be cut, hospitals will not magically become cleaner, Afghanistan will still be an issue and the pall of political correctness will remain a mephitic stain on the mores of society. bert

    Tony Blair: The Next Labour Prime Minister?

  • Let us keep our fingers crossed and hope that the tide that is swirling about the buckled patent leather pumps of Mr. Speaker sweeps him and her away down the Thames like so much noxious mephitic effluent.

    They Cannot Send All Of Us To The Gulag


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  • ...the train ... blocked the end of that street entirely, drawn up across it, hissing mephitically...

    - Malcolm Lowry, October Ferry to Gabriola

    July 30, 2008

  • "'Above all, do not stand about in this mephitic atmosphere. But first I beg that Mr Reade may be taken back to the ship and that the loblolly-boy should be told to rub him all over with vinegar and cut off his hair before he goes aboard, where he must be kept in quarantine?'"
    --Patrick O'Brian, The Nutmeg of Consolation, 244

    March 9, 2008

  • February 7, 2007