A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
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Bird (noun)

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 245

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 245

Bird. n.s. [bıꞃꝺ, or bꞃıꝺ, a chicken, Saxon.] A general term for the feathered kind; a fowl. In common talk, fowl is used for the larger, and bird for the smaller kind of feathered animals.

              The poor wren,
The most diminutive of birds will fight,
Her young ones in the nest, against the owl.

Sh' had all the regal makings of a queen;
As holy oil, Edward confessor's crown,
The rod and bird of peace, and all such emblems,
Laid nobly on her.
Shakesp. Henry VIII.

The bird of Jove, stoop'd from his airy tour,
Two birds of gayest plume before him drove.
Milton's Paradise Lost, b. xi. l. 186.

Hence men and beasts the breath of life obtain,
And birds of air, and monsters of the main.
Dryden's Æn.

There are some birds that are inhabitants of the water, whose blood is cold as fishes, and their flesh is so like in taste, that the scrupulous are allowed them on fish days. Locke.

Some squire perhaps you take delight to rack,
Who visits with a gun, presents with birds.

Sources: Dryden, John (788) · Shakespeare's Henry VIII (62) · Locke, John (269) · Shakespeare's Macbeth (136) · Milton, John (449) · Pope, Alexander (393)

Attributes: Noun Substantive (1269) · Saxon (215)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Bird (noun)." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: April 11, 2014. https://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/bird-noun/.

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