ATS Bible DictionaryFly
A genus of insects, of which there are a great many species. Moses declares them and most other insects to be unclean, Le 11:42. They abound in Egypt, and are annoying and vexatious in the extreme, attacking the eyelids, etc., in swarms and with the utmost pertinacity. How intolerable a plague of flies may be, is evident from the fact that whole districts in the Levant have been for a time depopulated by them, the inhabitants being unable to stand against their incessant attacks, Exodus 8:24. The Philistines and Canaanites adored Beelzebub, the fly-god, probably as a patron to protect them against these tormenting insects.
In Isaiah 7:18, the prophet describing the armies of Egypt and Assyria, each under the symbol of one of the prevalent insects in those countries, says, "And it shall come to pass in that day that the Lord shall hiss for the fly that is in the uttermost part of the rivers of Egypt;" (or rather, as the same Hebrew word is rendered in Exodus 16:35, the fly that is in the borders of the streams of Egypt,)" and for the bee that is in the land of Assyria." It is thought by some that the fly here spoken of is the zimb, or Ethiopian fly, of which Mr. Bruce says, "It is, in size, very little larger than a bee, of a thicker proportion, and has wings which are broader than those of a bee, placed separate, like those of a fly; they are of pure gauze, without color or spot upon them; the head is large. As soon as this plague appears, and their buzzing is heard, all the cattle forsake their food, and run wildly about the plain till they die, worn out with fatigue, fright, and hunger. No remedy remains but to leave the black earth, and hasten down to the sands of the desert; and there they remain while the rains last, this cruel enemy never daring to pursue them farther." The camel is also obliged to fly before these insects; and the elephant and rhinoceros coat themselves with a thick armor of mud.
International Standard Bible EncyclopediaFLY
(Verb; `uph petaomai, or, contracted, ptaomai):
Used in preference to "flee" when great speed is to be indicated. "To fly" is used: (1) Literally, of birds, `uph (Genesis 1:20 Psalm 55:6); da'ah (Deuteronomy 28:49), of sparks (Job 5:7); of the arrow (Psalm 91:5); of the seraphim (Isaiah 6:2, 6); of an angel (Daniel 9:21, ya`aph, "to be caused to fly"); of swift action or movement (Psalm 18:10 Jeremiah 48:40); of people (Isaiah 11:14); of a fleet (Isaiah 60:8 1 Samuel 15:19, 14:32, `asah, "to do," etc.). (2) Figuratively, of a dream (Job 20:8); of man's transitory life (Psalm 90:10); of riches (Proverbs 23:5); of national glory (Hosea 9:11).
For "fly" the Revised Version (British and American) has "soar" (Job 39:26) "fly down" (Isaiah 11:14); for "flying" (Isaiah 31:5) the American Standard Revised Version has "hovering."
W. L. Walker
fli fliz `arobh (Exodus 8:21 Psalm 78:45; Psalm 105:31; Septuagint kunomuia; "dog-fly"), zebhubh (Ecclesiastes 10:1 Isaiah 7:18; Septuagint muiai, "flies"); compare ba`al-zebhubh, "Baal-zebub" (2 Kings 1:2), and beelzeboul, "Beelzebul," or beelzeboub, "Beelzebub" (Matthew 10:25; Matthew 12:24, 27 Luke 11:15, 18, 19); compare Arabic dhubab, "fly" or "bee"; (Note: "dh" for Arabic dhal, pronounced like "d" or "z" or like th in "the"):
The references in Psalms as well as in Exodus are to the plague of flies, and the word `arobh is rendered "swarm of flies" throughout, except in Psalm 78:45; Psalm 105:31 the King James Version, where we find "divers sorts of flies" (compare Vulgate (Jerome's Latin Bible, 390-405 A.D.) omne genus muscarum). In Exodus 8:21 we read, "I will send swarms of flies upon thee, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are"; in Exodus 8:24,. "the land was corrupted by reason of the swarms of flies"; in Psalm 78:45, "He sent among them swarms of flies, which devoured them." There has been much speculation as to what the insects were, but all the texts cited, including even Psalm 78:45, may apply perfectly well to the common house fly (Musca domestica). Some species of blue-bottle fly (Calliphora) might also suit.
The other word, zebhubh, occurs in Ecclesiastes 10:1, "Dead flies cause the oil of the perfumer to send forth an evil odor; so doth a little folly outweigh wisdom and honor"; and Isaiah 7:18, "And it shall come to pass in that day, that Yahweh will hiss for the fly that is in the uttermost part of the rivers of Egypt, and for the bee that is in the land of Assyria:" The house fly would fit perfectly the reference in each, but that in Isaiah would seem to suggest rather one of the horse flies (Tabanidae) or gad flies (Oestridae). Whatever fly may be meant, it is used as a symbol for the military power of Egypt, as the bee for that of Assyria.
Owing to deficiencies in public and private hygiene, and also for other reasons, house flies and others are unusually abundant in Palestine and Egypt and are agents in the transmission of cholera, typhoid fever, ophthalmia and anthrax. Glossina morsitans, the tsetse fly, which is fatal to many domestic animals, and Glossina palpalis which transmits the sleeping sickness, are abundant in tropical Africa, but do not reach Egypt proper.
Alfred Ely Day
Easton's Bible Dictionary
Hebrews zebub, (Ecclesiastes 10:1
; Isaiah 7:18
). This fly was so grievous a pest that the Phoenicians invoked against it the aid of their god Baal-zebub (q.v.). The prophet Isaiah (7:18
) alludes to some poisonous fly which was believed to be found on the confines of Egypt, and which would be called by the Lord. Poisonous flies exist in many parts of Africa, for instance, the different kinds of tsetse.
Hebrews `arob, the name given to the insects sent as a plague on the land of Egypt (Exodus 8:21-31; Psalm 78:45; 105:31). The LXX. render this by a word which means the "dog-fly," the cynomuia. The Jewish commentators regarded the Hebrew word here as connected with the word 'arab, which means "mingled;" and they accordingly supposed the plague to consist of a mixed multitude of animals, beasts, reptiles, and insects. But there is no doubt that "the 'arab" denotes a single definite species. Some interpreters regard it as the Blatta orientalis, the cockroach, a species of beetle. These insects "inflict very painful bites with their jaws; gnaw and destroy clothes, household furniture, leather, and articles of every kind, and either consume or render unavailable all eatables."
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
1. (v. i.
) To move in or pass through the air with wings, as a bird.
2. (v. i.) To move through the air or before the wind; esp., to pass or be driven rapidly through the air by any impulse.
3. (v. i.) To float, wave, or rise in the air, as sparks or a flag.
4. (v. i.) To move or pass swiftly; to hasten away; to circulate rapidly; as, a ship flies on the deep; a top flies around; rumor flies.
5. (v. i.) To run from danger; to attempt to escape; to flee; as, an enemy or a coward flies. See Note under Flee.
6. (v. i.) To move suddenly, or with violence; to do an act suddenly or swiftly; -- usually with a qualifying word; as, a door flies open; a bomb flies apart.
7. (v. t.) To cause to fly or to float in the air, as a bird, a kite, a flag, etc.
8. (v. t.) To fly or flee from; to shun; to avoid.
9. (v. t.) To hunt with a hawk.
10. (v. i.) Any winged insect; esp., one with transparent wings; as, the Spanish fly; firefly; gall fly; dragon fly.
11. (v. i.) Any dipterous insect; as, the house fly; flesh fly; black fly. See Diptera.
12. (n.) A hook dressed in imitation of a fly, -- used for fishing.
13. (n.) A familiar spirit; a witch's attendant.
14. (n.) A parasite.
15. (n.) A kind of light carriage for rapid transit, plying for hire and usually drawn by one horse.
16. (n.) The length of an extended flag from its staff; sometimes, the length from the union to the extreme end.
17. (n.) The part of a vane pointing the direction from which the wind blows.
18. (v. i.) That part of a compass on which the points are marked; the compass card.
19. (v. i.) Two or more vanes set on a revolving axis, to act as a fanner, or to equalize or impede the motion of machinery by the resistance of the air, as in the striking part of a clock.
20. (n.) A heavy wheel, or cross arms with weights at the ends on a revolving axis, to regulate or equalize the motion of machinery by means of its inertia, where the power communicated, or the resistance to be overcome, is variable, as in the steam engine or the coining press. See Fly wheel (below).
21. (n.) The piece hinged to the needle, which holds the engaged loop in position while the needle is penetrating another loop; a latch.
22. (n.) The pair of arms revolving around the bobbin, in a spinning wheel or spinning frame, to twist the yarn.
23. (n.) A shuttle driven through the shed by a blow or jerk.
24. (v. i.) Formerly, the person who took the printed sheets from the press.
25. (n.) A vibrating frame with fingers, attached to a power to a power printing press for doing the same work.
26. (n.) The outer canvas of a tent with double top, usually drawn over the ridgepole, but so extended as to touch the roof of the tent at no other place.
27. (n.) One of the upper screens of a stage in a theater.
28. (n.) The fore flap of a bootee; also, a lap on trousers, overcoats, etc., to conceal a row of buttons.
29. (n.) A batted ball that flies to a considerable distance, usually high in the air; also, the flight of a ball so struck; as, it was caught on the fly.
30. (a.) Knowing; wide awake; fully understanding another's meaning.
Strong's Hebrew1675. daah -- to fly swiftly, dart through the air...
daah. 1676 >>. to fly
swiftly, dart through the air. Transliteration: daah Phonetic
Spelling: (daw-aw') Short Definition: swiftly. Word Origin a prim. ... fly
. ... /hebrew/1675.htm - 6k
2070. zebub -- a fly
... << 2069, 2070. zebub. 2071 >>. a fly. Transliteration: zebub Phonetic Spelling:
(zeb-oob') Short Definition: flies. Word Origin ... fly (1). fly. ...
/hebrew/2070.htm - 5k
5774a. uph -- to fly
... << 5774, 5774a. uph. 5774b >>. to fly. Transliteration: uph Short Definition:
flying. Word Origin a prim. root Definition to fly NASB ...
/hebrew/5774a.htm - 5k
82. abar -- to fly
... to fly. Transliteration: abar Phonetic Spelling: (aw-bar') Short Definition: soars.
Word Origin from an unused word Definition to fly NASB Word Usage soars (1). ...
/hebrew/82.htm - 5k
5774. uwph -- to fly
... to fly. Transliteration: uwph Phonetic Spelling: (oof) Short Definition: brandish.
brandish, be wax faint, flee away, fly away, set, shine forth, weary ...
/hebrew/5774.htm - 5k
5327a. natsah -- perhaps to fly
... natsah. 5327b >>. perhaps to fly. Transliteration: natsah Short Definition: fled.
Word Origin a prim. root Definition perhaps to fly NASB Word Usage fled (1). ...
/hebrew/5327a.htm - 5k
6524c. parach -- to fly
... parach. 6525 >>. to fly. Transliteration: parach Short Definition: birds. Word
Origin a prim. root Definition to fly NASB Word Usage birds (2). ...
/hebrew/6524c.htm - 5k
5327. natsah -- perhaps to fly
... natsah. 5327a >>. perhaps to fly. Transliteration: natsah Phonetic Spelling:
(naw-tsaw') Short Definition: waste. be laid waste, ruinous, strive together ...
/hebrew/5327.htm - 5k
5860. iyt -- to scream, shriek
... << 5859, 5860. iyt. 5860a >>. to scream, shriek. Transliteration: iyt Phonetic
Spelling: (eet) Short Definition: fly. fly, rail A primitive ...
/hebrew/5860.htm - 5k
6524. parach -- to bud, sprout, shoot
... abroad, abundantly, blossom, break forth out, bud, flourish, make fly,
grow, A primitive root; to break forth as a bud, ie Bloom ...
/hebrew/6524.htm - 5k