intr.v. reeked, reek·ing, reeks
1. To give off a strong unpleasant odor: "Grandma, who reeks of face powder and lilac water" (Garrison Keillor).
2. To be pervaded by something unpleasant: "This document ... reeks of self-pity and self-deception" (Christopher Hitchens).
3. Chiefly British To smoke, steam, or fume.
1. A strong offensive odor; a stench. See Synonyms at stench.
2. Chiefly British Smoke or vapor.
[Middle English reken, to emit smoke, from Old English rēocan, to emit smoke, and rēcan, to expose to smoke; see reug- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.