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nothing to sniff at

Not something that should be ignored, dismissed, or treated with disdain; something that is not inconsequential. The amount of votes she managed to muster is nothing to sniff at. Sure, a hundred bucks isn't a huge amount to have won, but it's definitely nothing to sniff at!
See also: nothing, sniff

nothing to be sniffed at

Not something that should be ignored, dismissed, or treated with disdain; something that is not inconsequential. The amount of votes she managed to muster is nothing to be sniffed at. Sure, a hundred bucks isn't a huge amount to have won, but it's definitely nothing to be sniffed at!
See also: nothing, sniff

sniff test

1. The act of questioning the viability of an idea or course of action. Josh thinks he has a solid plan, but it doesn't pass the sniff test for me—I don't see how it will be profitable.
2. In medicine, a test of the phrenic nerve in which the patient must sniff forcefully. Next, we're going to do a sniff test so that I can see exactly how your phrenic nerve is functioning.
3. In medicine, a way to recognize bacterial vaginosis (which presents with a fishlike odor). I've only done a sniff test so far, but I think that patient has bacterial vaginosis.
4. The act of smelling something to determine whether or not it has a fresh odor. These leftovers pass the sniff test, so I'll heat them up for lunch. You can't wear that shirt again without washing it—it definitely doesn't pass the sniff test!
See also: sniff, test

sniff (someone or something) out

1. Literally, to locate someone's or something's location using one's sense of smell. (Almost exclusively said of dogs.) We've sent a pack of dogs to sniff the fugitive out. The police use specially trained dogs to sniff out drugs and bombs.
2. By extension, to uncover, reveal, or expose someone or something. If the company is up to anything fishy, the auditor will sniff it out. Our lead investigative journalist sniffed out the politician leaking information to foreign intelligence agents.
See also: out, sniff

have a (good) sniff around

To investigate or examine a place or area for more information. Please tell me that the cops won't find any incriminating evidence if they have a sniff around your office.
See also: around, have, sniff

not get a sniff of (something)

To not get even the smallest portion or sample of something desirable. Health insurance, a company phone, and a pension plan? Man, I didn't get a sniff of benefits like that when I was working for that company. He didn't patent the design, so when it went on to make millions of dollars, he didn't get a sniff of it.
See also: get, not, of, sniff

sniff at someone or something

1. Lit. to try to get the smell of someone or something by smelling. The dog sniffed at the visitor. The cat sniffed at almost every inch of the rug that the dog had walked on.
2. Fig. to show one's disapproval of someone or something by sniffing. (Sometimes this is figurative, the "sniffing" being expressed by tone of voice or gesture.) I made one suggestion, but Claire just sniffed at me. Gale just sniffed at the idea and would say nothing.
See also: sniff

sniff someone or something out

to locate someone or something by sniffing or as if by sniffing. The dog sniffed the intruder out and the police captured him. The dog sniffed out the mole in the lawn.
See also: out, sniff

not to be sneezed at

Also, nothing to sneeze at. Not to be ignored or dismissed, as in It's a great honor, not to be sneezed at, or That salary of his is nothing to sneeze at. This expression presumably alludes to turning up one's nose in disdain. [c. 1800]
See also: not, sneeze

sniff out

Uncover, as If there's anything to that rumor, Gladys will sniff it out. This expression alludes to an animal sniffing for prey. [First half of 1900s]
See also: out, sniff

not to be sneezed at


not to be sniffed at

If something is not to be sneezed at or not to be sniffed at, it is worth having. The money's not to be sneezed at. At least she had somewhere to live and a job — both temporary, but not to be sniffed at.
See also: not, sneeze

not to be sneezed at

not to be rejected without careful consideration; worth having or taking into account. informal
See also: not, sneeze

not to be ˈsneezed/ˈsniffed at

(informal) important or worth having: If I were you, I’d take the job. A salary like that’s not to be sneezed at.
See also: not, sneeze, sniff

have a (good) ˌsniff aˈround

examine a place carefully: Come and visit our website and have a sniff around!
This refers to the way that a dog sniffs (= smells) something in order to find out more about it.
See also: around, have, sniff

not get a ˈsniff of something

(informal) not succeed in obtaining something: I worked in Hollywood for years, but I never got a sniff of the big money.
See also: get, not, of, sniff, something

sniff around

To pry; snoop: The reporters came sniffing around for more details. The detectives sniffed around the basement for clues. The guard caught them sniffing around in the room where the files are kept.
See also: around, sniff

sniff at

1. To use the sense of smell to investigate something: I sniffed at the jar to see what it held.
2. To regard someone or something in a contemptuous or dismissive manner: The critics sniffed at the film, even though it was very popular. The amount of funds we've managed to raise in a week is nothing to sniff at.
See also: sniff

sniff out

To perceive or detect someone or something by or as if by sniffing: The dogs sniffed out the trail through the snow. The detectives sniffed the plot out and arrested the criminals.
See also: out, sniff


n. a drink of liquor. (see also snort.) I’d like just a sniff of that Scotch.
References in periodicals archive ?
Thanks to the roll out, the number and frequency of young people sniffing petrol in remote communities is still decreasing.
In this way, overhead and difficulty of sniffing are increased since continuous communication data is difficult to obtain.
Earliest reports of petrol sniffing in the Northern Territory among Aboriginal groups stem back to the Second World War, from the influences of American servicemen who were stationed throughout north Australia and were claimed to inhale petrol when alcohol was unavailable (Brady, 1992, p.
Bryn Taylor, dad of tragic Danielle, issues his warning at the launch of an anti-solvent abuse campaign, watched on by PC Joanna Edwards of North Wales Police Picture: RICHARD WILLIAMS; Sixteen-year-old Danielle Taylor died after sniffing from an aerosol can
His actions were caught on supermarket CCTV footage which showed him sniffing the fuel, then dancing around the forecourt.
Now the Liberal Democrat Health spokesman Paul Burstow is demanding urgent action to stop bored kids sniffing themselves into oblivion.
Although it's possible to sniff a Fibre Channel network, it is much more difficult than sniffing an IP-based network.
Inhalants are breathed in through the more or mouth in a number of ways, variously called sniffing, snorting, huffing, or bagging.
While similar studies have examined the sniffing ability of a dozen other mammals, none have taken on marine mammals.
Sniffing the banana, mint, or green apple essences throughout the day purportedly tells the brain's satiety center that eating is not on the agenda.
The Birmingham coroner has warned about the dangers of sniffing butane gas after a teenage girl collapsed and died at a house.
11, tenants would be asking their landlords 'why don't we have K-9 units sniffing our mail and loading docks?
Porcine handlers report that pigs are `better at sniffing out drugs than any dog they have ever found.
1072 (1984) ("We have little doubt that if faced with dragnet sniffing of human beings for evidence of crime, most of our colleagues would join in outrage at the violation of the reasonable expectation of privacy in one's body.
The hardest thing for youths struggling with an addiction to gas sniffing is that "there is no after-care in the community.