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Document Type

Article

Abstract

There are more odors in heaven and earth, Horatio, than you can find listed in any standard work on the subject or in all the advertising and catalogues of the perfumery trade. The woods are full of odors, especially in dewy mornings of spring and in the moist twilight after sundown. The woods are also full of wild creatures with noses automatically tuned to catch odor meanings and ready to flee, or chase, or mate, or fight to the death as one or another may appraise the significance for him of the communication. The great major themes of life and death and love burden the airborne odor molecules, crisscrossing and tangling with one another as well as with many minor themes all in apparent anarchy until each sender's plea, or threat, or pleasant welcome finds an appropriate receptor, when order is restored, much as the confused babble of a telephone exchange becomes rational as calls are properly plugged in. (Bedichek, 1960, pp. 131-132)

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