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Sir Anthony Stench - first flatulencologist

The Stench Continuum is a framework created to sort out the olfactory powers of flatulence. It was named after the first flatulencologist Sir Anthony Stench.


Before the stench continuum was invented, only the statements of nose witnesses could be used for documenting and fighting olfactory disasters. In severe cases, these witnesses often were not approachable, so that the intensity of evaporations could not be determined afterwards with the required accuracy. In 1882, the Royal Society therefore appointed Sir Anthony Stench to develop a standard for measurement of fetidness. The result, named Stench Continuum after its creator, quickly was accepted and used throughout the British Commonwealth. In 1902, after the Bremen Bean Eating Contest disaster, Germany was the first country in mainland Europe to adopt the standard.

In 1912, Sir Anthony Stench was awarded the Nobel Prize for Olfactorics for his lifetime achievements. Today, he is widely acclaimed as the founder of the science of flatulencology.


The nose-activating powers are classified into 13 intensity values in ascending order. The described effects are easy to identify for experts as well as amateurs, so that a well-defined classification is always possible.

Olfactory power
in stench
Verbose description Effects
0 odourless not observable olfactorily
1 slight hint can be perceived as a light breeze from a small distance
2 weak odour noses are wrinkled
3 moderate odour people turn their faces; speakers are irritated
4 strong odour conversation is interrupted; disgust is expressed
5 fart conversation is stopped abruptly; people fan air demonstratively
6 strong fart weak people attempt to escape; burning eyes; occasional fits of dizziness
7 intense fart frequent fits of dizziness and vertigo; weak people get breathing problems; increased nervousness in dogs and cats
8 fetid fart nausea; stronger attempts to escape; general shortage of breath in enclosed rooms
9 fetidness dogs howl; general shortage of breath even outdoors; single cases of unconsciousness
10 massive fetidness windows are clouded; fire alarms set off; flowers wither; painfully burning eyes
11 rotting fetidness panic in humans and animals; birds drop from the sky; epidemic nausea
12 decay complete unconsciousness; wallpapers peel away from walls; lasting damage in flora and fauna

Legal aspects[edit]

  • In many countries, evaporations of 10 stench or higher are subject to registration with the local health authorities.
  • Evaporations of 7 stench or higher can justify a layoff or a cancellation of a rental agreement if repeated or lasting for a longer period of time.
  • Starting an open fire is prohibited in environments of 8 stench or higher. In case of injuries or material damage, insurance will be cancelled in such cases.
recommended measures in case of high stench values
  • Many public transport companies have included stench protection in their terms and conditions. In case of evaporations of 6 stench or higher and a remaining time of more than 2 minutes to the next stop, the offending passenger will be subject to a fine, depending on the stench value, the season, and outside temperature. In repeated cases the passenger can be ordered by a judge to keep a fart log.

Final notes[edit]

  • The Stench Continuum can not be applied to a general bad atmosphere as it might pervade in classrooms or sweatshops.

See also[edit]

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