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This is a sentence from a book I'm translating, the one before that is "The first thing I met was a regiment of the vilest odors that ever assaulted the human nose, and took it by storm." So, what is the author implying by this "Cologne" sentence?

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What is the original language? 'Cologne' is both the name of a big town in Germany -and- a kind of men's perfume (that actually smells nice). – Mitch May 17 '13 at 12:50

The author is implying that Cologne is extremely malodourous (seven and seventy evil savours is a poetic way of putting it) but the smell in Cologne is immensely preferable to the niff he is currently describing; by comparison the smell in Cologne is very pleasant: was a posy-bed [compared] to it.

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Very helpful, thanks a lot! – Sarah Hsu May 17 '13 at 11:51
@SarahHsu you can accept the answer – mplungjan May 17 '13 at 11:56
Sounds like the protagonist was wearing cologne, and the stuff was fullfilling one of its age old purposes: rendering offensive odors less objectionable. – Wayfaring Stranger May 17 '13 at 12:50
@WayfaringStranger, could be. I hadn't thought of that. On the other hand, even if you don't find eau-de-cologne the most agreeable scent, it isn't usually said to have seven and seventy evil savours. – Brian Hooper May 17 '13 at 12:56

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