A smell or a taste could be pungent: so strong, sharp or powerful that it was unpleasant. When smelling something pungent, one would often "purse [their] lips [and] flare [their] nostrils", (PROSE: Pass It On) or "wrinkle [their] nose". (PROSE: Sunday Afternoon, AD 848,988) Such an experience could also provoke one to throw up. (PROSE: Hymn of the City) A pungent smell in the air could indicate that an area was being gassed, perhaps with poison. (PROSE: Wish You Were Here)

One such smell was when something was "fishy", (PROSE: Tragedy Day) like the pungent odour of "mint and fish". (PROSE: Have You Tried Turning It Off and Then Back On Again?) Another pungent mixture was "paint, ozone and fruit". (PROSE: Honest Living) Strong aromas within a vegetarian diet that could be considered pungent were turnip and mangel wurzel, while the strong smell of cooking meat could have a similar effect. (PROSE: Autaia Pipipi Pia) Brad Travers considered clam chowder to be pungent. (PROSE: Inmate 280)

A "rotting vegetable smell", such as that produced by chlorophyll, was incredibly pungent to Barbara Wright, and, according to her, remained in Ian Chesterton's science classroom long after his students had cleared out. (PROSE: Nothing at the End of the Lane)

Some types of cheese could be pungent, such as a moon truffle of Junfoot albino goat's cheese, which was churned beneath a blue moon, and left to mature for sixty years. The yellow-rinded cheese had an odour which "seeped almost visibly through its wrapping". (PROSE: Seven Deadly Sins)

Victoria Waterfield found that cows had a pungent smell, (PROSE: On a Pedestal) and the Seventh Doctor found the Kortani reeked of "bloodlust" in their enzymes. (PROSE: Peaceable Kingdom) The Ameteli were easily identified by their pungent smell of bodily gasses. (COMIC: Love is in the Air) Raxacoricofallapatorian farts smelled like bad breath, or calcium decay. (TV: World War Three)

The breath of one police officer was described as pungent. (PROSE: Verdigris) Chemicals such as ozone could have pungent odours, as well. (PROSE: Tragedy Day) Smoke could be both sweet and pungent. (PROSE: That Which Went Away) River water could also be a pungent smell, especially when associated with unpleasant memories, (PROSE: Blue Road Dance) or if particularly muddy. (PROSE: Midnight in the Café of the Black Madonna)

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