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smell of the lamp

To show the signs of arduous, overwrought effort, and to lack freshness or vitality as a result. (Said especially of academic or literary work.) His thesis is meticulously crafted, but the paragraphs are so dry and calculated, and the paper lacks any flourish or style. As a whole, it rather smells of the lamp to me.
See also: lamp, of, smell

he who smelt it dealt it

A retort made when someone has passed gas that places the blame on the first person to acknowledge the smell. A: "What's that awful smell?" B: "Hey, he who smelt it dealt it!"
See also: dealt, he, smelt, who

smell of the lamp

show signs of laborious study and effort.
The lamp here is an oil lamp, formerly used for night-time work or study.
See also: lamp, of, smell
References in periodicals archive ?
We knew smelt had been recorded occasionally by anglers in the 1970s and 1980s but we were unsure whether a breeding population still existed.
Any anglers catching smelt on the Tyne are asked to carefully return the fish to the water and report their catch to the Environment Agency by emailing Robert.
The abundance of smelt and age-0+ pikeperch was calculated as an average of the number of fish caught per trawled hour.
The greatest yield of smelt (2214 t) over the past decade on the Estonian side of L.
The average TL of age-1 smelt was less than 70 mm in five years, between 70 and 80 mm in four years, and in 2006, when the abundance was low, as high as 85.
High average TW values were measured for age-1 smelt in 2005 and 2006 (2.
The number of smelt did not depend directly on either the catch or numbers of age-0+ pikeperch, except in 2005 (distinguished by an outstandingly high number of age-0+ piscivores).
But the cause for concern appears to be behind us following a strong smelt run last year and what appears to be an even bigger one now in progress.
The smelt have recovered well," King said Wednesday.
King and other fishery biologists say the smelt population crash was likely triggered by "poor ocean conditions" resulting from a strong El Nino event in the early 1990s.
But prime ocean conditions the past couple of years obviously helped fuel a rapid rebound in smelt populations.
Right now there's a mass of smelt stalled in the Columbia right off the Portland Airport," he said.
Entrainment of larval, juvenile and adult smelt in water diversions, such as the Central Valley Project (CVP) and State Water Project (SWP).
Genetic dilution by immigration of a closely related smelt, the wakasagi, from Central Valley reservoirs.
The Delta smelt agenda item is scheduled early on the commission's agenda for April 2.