Loading...

American Dictionary of the English Language

Dictionary Search

Fly


FLY, verb intransitive

1. To move through air by the aid of wings, as fowls.

2. To pass or move in air, by the force of wind or other impulse; as, clouds and vapors fly before the wind. A ball flies from a cannon, an arrow from a bow.

3. To rise in air, as light substances, by means of a current of air or by having less specific gravity than air, as smoke.

Man is born to trouble, as the sparks fly upward. Job 5:7.

4. To move or pass with velocity or celerity, either on land or water. He flew to the relief of his distressed friend. The ship flies upon the main.

5. To move rapidly, in any manner; as, a top flies about.

6. To pass away; to depart; with the idea of haste, swiftness or escape. The bird has flown.

7. To pass rapidly, as time. Swift fly the fleeting hours.

8. To part suddenly or with violence; to burst, as a bottle.

9. To spring by an elastic force.

10. To pass swiftly, as rumor or report.

11. To flee; to run away; to attempt to escape; to escape.

I'll fly from shepherds, flocks, and flowery plains.

12. To flutter; to vibrate or play; as a flag in the wind.

To fly at, to spring towards; to rush on; to fall on suddenly. A hen flies at a dog or cat; a dog flies at a man.

1. To fly in the face, to insult.

2. To assail; to resist; to set at defiance; to oppose with violence; to act in direct opposition.

1. To fly off, to separate or depart suddenly.

2. To revolt.

To fly open, to open suddenly or with violence; as, the doors flew open.

1. To fly out, to rush out; also, to burst into a passion.

2. To break out into license.

3. To start or issue with violence from any direction.

1. To let fly to discharge; to throw or drive with violence; as, to let fly a shower of darts.

2. In seamanship, to let go suddenly. Let fly the sheets.

FLY, verb transitive [This is used for flee, and from is understood after fly so that it can hardly be called a transitive verb.]

1. To shun; to avoid; to decline; as, to fly the sight of one we hate. That is, primarily, to flee from

Sleep flies the wretch.

2. To quit by flight.

3. To attack by a bird of prey. [Not used.]

4. To cause to float in the air.

FLY, noun

1. In zoology, a winged insect of various species, whose distinguishing characteristic is that the wings are transparent. By this flies are distinguished from beetles, butterflies, grasshoppers, etc. Of flies, some have two wings and others four.

In common language, fly is the house fly of the genus Musca.

2. In mechanics, a cross with leaden weights at the ends, or a heavy wheel at right angles with the axis of a windlass, jack or the like. The use of this is, to regulate and equalize the motion in all parts of the revolution of the machine.

3. That part of a vane which points and shows which way the wind blows.

4. The extent of an ensign, flag or pendant from the staff to the end that flutters loose in the wind.