Scripture Alphabet Of AnimalsQuail
The quail is about the size of a pigeon. It is called a bird of passage, because it does not always live in the same place, but spends the winter in one country, and in the spring flies away to another. In their journies, they fly together in very large flocks, as you have perhaps seen wild geese or pigeons do. A great many spend the summer north of the Black Sea, and when autumn comes they fly away to spend the winter in some warmer place, farther south. They usually start early some fine evening in August, when there is a north wind to help them on, and fly perhaps a hundred and fifty miles before morning. The people on the opposite shore of the Black Sea know about what time to look for them, and catch a great many of them for food.
God sometimes sent quails to the children of Israel when they were in the wilderness. Once they complained because they had no meat to eat, pretty soon after God had saved them from the hand of Pharaoh; and then he brought a great many quails into their camp, so that they had as many as they wanted for food. At another time, when they were on their journey, these ungrateful people complained again, and wished they were back in Egypt, where they could have "fish, and melons, and cucumbers," as they said. Then God saw fit to send them quails again, though he was very much displeased with their wickedness; so much so that he sent a dreadful sickness among them, of which many died. The Bible says, "And there went forth a wind from the Lord, and brought quails from the sea, and let them fall by the camp, as it were a day's journey on this side, and a day's journey on the other side, round about the camp, and as it were two cubits high upon the face of the earth. And the people stood up all that day, and all that night, and all the next day, and they gathered the quails; he that gathered least, gathered ten homers; and they spread them all abroad for themselves round about the camp."
The number of these quails was very wonderful. They covered the ground all around the camp, and as far every way as a person could go in a " day's journey," by which they meant twenty miles or more. And they not only covered all that ground, but were piled upon each other, to the height of more than a yard. The people gathered great quantities of them; probably they intended to dry a part, which is still a custom in those hot and sandy countries. "He that gathered least," we read, " gathered ten homers." A homer was about eight bushels, or as much as an ass could carry at a load; and ten homers, of course, was about eighty bushels. You see how eager the people were to get them, for they could not even sleep at night through fear that they should not have as many as they wanted; so they stood up to gather them "all that day, and all that night, and all the next day."
These things are several times spoken of in other parts of the Bible, especially in the Psalm 78. It is there said, "He rained flesh upon them as dust, and feathered fowls like as the sand of the sea. And he let it fall in the midst of the camp, round about their habitations. So they did eat, and were well filled, for he gave them their own desire; but while the meat was yet in their mouths, the wrath of God came upon them."
Perhaps it was not wrong for the children of Israel to ask for meat to eat, but God was displeased with them for their complaining spirit notwithstanding all his goodness; and although he gave them what they asked, it proved to be only a curse to them. This may teach us to be grateful for the thousand blessings that God has given us, and when we ask any thing from him, to be willing that he should deny us if he sees best.
International Standard Bible EncyclopediaQUAIL
kwal (selaw; ortugometra; Latin Coturnix vulgaris): A game bird of the family Coturnix, closely related to "partridges" (which see). Quail and partridges are near relatives, the partridge a little larger and of brighter color. Quail are like the gray, brown and tan of earth. Their plumage is cut and penciled by markings, and their flesh juicy and delicate food. Their habits are very similar. They nest on the ground and brood on from 12 to 20 eggs. The quail are more friendly birds and live in the open, brooding along roads and around fields. They have a longer, fuller wing than the partridge and can make stronger flight. In Palestine they were migratory. They are first mentioned in Exodus 16:13: "And it came to pass at even, that the quails came up, and covered the camp: and in the morning the dew lay round about the camp." This describes a large flock in migration, so that they passed as a cloud. Numbers 11:31-33: "And there went forth a wind from Yahweh, and brought quail from the sea, and let them fall by the camp, about a day's journey on this side, and a day's journey on the other side, round about the camp, and about two cubits above the face of the earth. And the people rose up all that day, and all the night, and all the next day, and gathered the quail: he that gathered least gathered ten homers: and they spread them all abroad for themselves round about the camp"; compare Psalm 78:26-30:
"He caused the east wind to blow in the heavens;
And by his power he guided the south wind.
He rained flesh also upon them as the dust,
And winged birds as the sand of the seas:
And he let it fall in the midst of their camp,
Round about their habitations.
So they did eat, and were well filled;
And he gave them their own desire."
Again the birds are mentioned in migration. Those that fell around the camp and the bread that was sent from heaven are described in Psalm 105:39-42. Commentators have had trouble with the above references. They cause the natural historian none-they are so in keeping with the location and the laws of Nature. First the Hebrew selaw means "to be fat." That would be precisely the condition of the quail after a winter of feeding in the South. The time was early spring, our April, and the quail were flocking from Africa and spreading in clouds-even to Europe. They were birds of earth, heavy feeders and of plump, full body. Migration was such an effort that when forced to cross a large body of water they always waited until the wind blew in the direction of their course, lest they tire and fall. Their average was about 16 birds to each nest. If half a brood escaped, they yet multiplied in such numbers as easily to form clouds in migration. Pliny writes of their coming into Italy in such numbers, and so exhausted with their long flight, that if they sighted a sailing vessel they settled upon it by hundreds and in such numbers as to sink it. Taking into consideration the diminutive vessels of that age and the myriads of birds, this does not appear incredible. Now compare these facts with the text. Israelites were encamped on the Sinai Peninsula. The birds were in migration. The quail followed the Red Sea until they reached the point of the peninsula where they selected the narrowest place, and when the wind was with them they crossed the water. Not far from the shore arose the smoke from the campfires of the Israelites. This bewildered them, and, weary from their journey, they began to settle in confused thousands over and around the camp. Then the Israelites arose and, with the ever-ready "throw sticks," killed a certain number for every soul of the camp and spread the bodies on the sand to dry, just as Herodotus (ii. 77) records that the Egyptians always had done (see Rawlinson, Herodotus, II, for an illustration of catching and drying quail). Nature and natural history can account for this incident, with no need to call in the miraculous.
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
1. (v. i.
) To die; to perish; hence, to wither; to fade.
2. (v. i.) To become quelled; to become cast down; to sink under trial or apprehension of danger; to lose the spirit and power of resistance; to lose heart; to give way; to shrink; to cower.
3. (v. t.) To cause to fail in spirit or power; to quell; to crush; to subdue.
4. (v. i.) To curdle; to coagulate, as milk.
5. (n.) Any gallinaceous bird belonging to Coturnix and several allied genera of the Old World, especially the common European quail (C. communis), the rain quail (C. Coromandelica) of India, the stubble quail (C. pectoralis), and the Australian swamp quail (Synoicus australis).
6. (n.) Any one of several American partridges belonging to Colinus, Callipepla, and allied genera, especially the bobwhite (called Virginia quail, and Maryland quail), and the California quail (Calipepla Californica).
7. (n.) Any one of numerous species of Turnix and allied genera, native of the Old World, as the Australian painted quail (Turnix varius). See Turnix.
8. (n.) A prostitute; -- so called because the quail was thought to be a very amorous bird.
Strong's Hebrew7958. selav -- quail...
<< 7957, 7958. selav. 7959 >>. quail
. Transliteration: selav Phonetic Spelling:
(sel-awv') Short Definition: quail
. Word Origin probably ... /hebrew/7958.htm - 6k