Smell a rat

Posted by ESC on March 12, 2003

In Reply to: Smell a rat posted by S. Ryan on March 12, 2003

: Any ideas on the origin of to "smell a rat?"

Guessing here. A "rat" means a snitch or informer. "Smelling a rat" -- not to gross anyone out, but have you ever smelled a dead rat in a wall? Very bad odor. Joining those two concepts together, a person says, "I smell a rat" when treachery is suspected.