A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
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View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1153

View Scan · View Transcription · from page 1153

Kite. n.s. [cẏꞇa, Saxon.]

  1. A bird of prey that infests the farms, and steals the chickens.

                  Ravenous crows and kites
    Fly o'er our heads.
    Shakespeare's Julius Cæsar.

    More pity that the eagle should be mew'd,
    While kites and buzzards prey at liberty.
    Shakes. R. III.

    The heron, when she soareth high, so as sometimes she is seen to pass over a cloud, sheweth winds; but kites, flying aloft, shew fair and dry weather. Bacon.

    A leopard and a cat seem to differ just as a kite doth from an eagle. Grew.

  2. A name of reproach denoting rapacity.

    Detested kite! thou liest. Shakes. King Lear.

  3. A fictitious bird made of paper.

    A man may have a great estate conveyed to him; but if he will madly burn, or childishly make paper kites of his deeds, he forfeits his title with his evidence. Gov. of the Tongue.

Sources: Allestree, Richard (89) · Bacon, Francis (396) · Grew, Nehemiah (36) · Shakespeare's Julius Caesar (42) · Shakespeare's King Lear (144) · Shakespeare's Richard III (63)

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

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Kite." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: February 22, 2014. https://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/kite/.

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