The Noses Have It; November 1995; Scientific American Magazine; by Mirsky; 1 Page(s)
Tell me where is fancy bred, Or in the heart or in the head?" William Shakespeare wonders in The Merchant of Venice. "How begot, how nourished?" He then answers his own question: "It is engender¿d in the eyes, With gazing fed." Yeah, well, Shakespeare, writing in the days before daily showers, must have been keeping the pungent truth to himself. The eyes may be the windows to the soul, but smell might be the doorway.
Swiss researchers recently published a report in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of London that tested the role male body odor has in female mate choice. Perhaps just as important, the researchers finally found a place in science for the T-shirt--as something other than the standard uniform of the graduate student.