sniff (v.)

mid-14c., of imitative origin; possibly related to snyvelen (see snivel). As an expression of scorn or contempt from 1729. As a synonym for smell (v.) it dates from 1845. In reference to cocaine from 1925. Related: Sniffed; sniffing.

sniff (n.)

1767, from sniff (v.); the scornful sense is from 1859.

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