Olfactory vs old factory

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Olfactory is a word that has been in use since the mi-1600s, while old factory is a more recent invention. We will examine the definitions of the words olfactory and old factory, where they came from and some examples of use in sentences.

Olfactory describes something that is related to the sense of smell. Olfactory is an adjective, the noun form is olfaction. The olfactory system includes the structures of the nose, as well as olfactory glands and olfactory nerves. The word olfactory is derived from the Latin word olfactorius, meaning to catch the odor of something or to sniff. Olfactory is a scientific word that is also used in everyday language.

Old factory is an eggcorn of the word olfactory. An eggcorn is a term that consists of misheard words or phrases that retain the original meaning. The term eggcorn was coined in 2003, in a Language Log post.


What remains unclear is whether there is also something like an “olfactory homunculus,” i.e. whether our sense of smell can convey spatial information to the brain via a spatial neuron structure. (Science Daily)

Enter Charles Delahunt and colleagues at the University of Washington in Seattle, who have created an artificial neural network that mimics the structure and behavior of the olfactory learning system in Manduca sexta moths. (The MIT Technology Review)

The team was able to see a series of responses to carbon dioxide in the brain, the earliest being in the olfactory bulb, the part of the brain that processes smell in mammals. (Asian Scientist Magazine)

While changes in taste buds contribute to decreased sense of taste, it’s actually the decreases in olfactory function, or sense of smell, that play the most important role in taste. (The Times Telegram)