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Dictionaries :: Fly

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Easton's Bible Dictionary


Heb. zebub, (Ecc 10:1; Isa 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 (Isa 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.

Heb. 'arob, the name given to the insects sent as a plague on the land of Egypt (Exd 8:21-31; Psa 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."

International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia


(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 (Ge 1:20; Ps 55:6); da'ah (De 28:49), of sparks (Job 5:7); of the arrow (Ps 91:5); of the seraphim (Isa 6:2,6); of an angel (Da 9:21, ya?aph, "to be caused to fly"); of swift action or movement (Ps 18:10; Jer 48:40); of people (Isa 11:14); of a fleet (Isa 60:8; 1Sa 15:19, 14:32, ?asah, "to do," etc.).

(2) Figuratively, of a dream (Job 20:8); of man's transitory life (Ps 90:10); of riches (Pr 23:5); of national glory (Ho 9:11).

For "fly" the Revised Version (British and American) has "soar" (Job 39:26) "fly down" (Isa 11:14); for "flying" (Isa 31:5) the American Standard Revised Version has "hovering."

Written by W. L. Walker

Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words
1 Strong's Number: g4072 Greek: petomai


"to fly" (the root of which is seen in pteron and pterux, "a wing," ptilon, "a feather," etc.), is confined to the Apocalypse, 4:7; 8:13; 12:14; 14:6; 19:17. Some mss. have the verb petaomai, a frequentative form.


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