come up smelling of roses

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come up smelling of roses

To maintain a favorable reputation despite involvement in a scandalous or otherwise negative situation. By reporting his colleagues as soon as the feds started snooping around, the CEO pocketed millions and still came up smelling of roses.
See also: come, of, rose, smell, up
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

come up smelling of roses

If someone who has been in a difficult situation comes up smelling of roses, they are now in a better or stronger situation than they were before. The most hated man in England once again comes up smelling of roses. No matter what the problem, he somehow manages to wriggle out of it and come up smelling of roses. As he remarked, Sir Charles had not come out of the episode smelling of roses. Note: You usually use this expression to show your surprise or anger that this has happened.
See also: come, of, rose, smell, up
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

come up (or out) smelling of roses (or violets)

make a lucky escape from a difficult situation with your reputation intact. informal
The fuller form of this expression, fall in the shit and come up smelling of roses , explains the idea behind it.
See also: come, of, rose, smell, up
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

come up/out of something smelling of ˈroses

(informal) still have a good reputation, even though you have been involved in something that might have given people a bad opinion of you: Nobody ever knew the details and he came out of the deal smelling of roses.
See also: come, of, out, rose, smell, something, up
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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