The surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectra of rhodanine adsorbed on silver nanoparticles have been examined using 514.5 and 632.8 nm excitation. There is evidence that, under the experimental conditions used, rhodanine undergoes a nanoparticle surface-induced reaction resulting in the formation of a dimeric species via the active methylene group in a process which is analogous to the Knoevenagel reaction. The experimental observations are supported by DFT calculations at the B3-LYP/cc-pVDZ level. Calculated energies for the interaction of the E and Z isomers of the dimers of rhodanine with silver nanoparticles support a model in which the (intra-molecular hydrogen bonded) E isomer dimer is of lower energy than the Z isomer. A strong band, at 1566 cm(-1), in the SERS spectrum of rhodanine is assigned to the nu(C=C) mode of the dimer species.