SWARM, noun sworm. [Latin ferveo, and boiling is very expressive of the motions of a swarm of bees. See the Verb.]
1. In a general sense, a large number or body of small animals or insects, particularly when in motion; but appropriately, a great number of honey bees which emigrate from a hive at once, and seek new lodgings under the direction of a queen; or a like body of bees united and settled permanently in a hive. The bees that leave a hive in spring, are the young bees produced in the year preceding. Exodus 8:24. Judges 14:8.
2. A swarm or multitude; particularly, a multitude of people in motion. Swarms of northern nations overran the south of Europe in the fifth century.
Note.--The application of this word to inanimate things, as swarms of advantages, by Shakespeare, and swarms of themes, by Young, is not legitimate, for the essence of the word is motion.
SWARM, verb intransitive sworm.
1. To collect and depart from a hive by flight in a body, as bees. Bees swarm in warm, clear days in summer.
2. To appear or collect in a crowd; to run; to throng together; to congregate in a multitude.
In crowds around the swarming people join.
3. To be crowded; to be thronged with a multitude of animals in motion. The forests in America often swarm with wild pigeons. The northern seas in spring swarm with herrings.
Every place swarms with soldiers.
[Such phrases as 'life swarms with ills, ' 'those days swarmed with fables, ' are not legitimate, or wholly obsolete.
4. To breed multitudes.
5. To climb, as a tree, by embracing it with the arms and legs, and scrambling.
At the top was placed a piece of money, as a prize for those who could swarm up and seize it.
Note.--This, by the common people in New England, is pronounced squirm or squurm, and it is evidently formed on worm, indicating that worm and warm, on which swarm and squirm are formed, are radically the same word. The primary sense is to bend, wind, twist, as a worm, or a swarm of bees. It may be formed on the foot of veer, vary.
SWARM, verb transitive To crowd or throng. [Not in use.]