swallow Summary and Overview
swallow in Easton's Bible Dictionary
(1.) Heb. sis (Isa. 38:14; Jer. 8:7), the Arabic for the swift, which "is a regular migrant, returning in myriads every spring, and so suddenly that while one day not a swift can be seen in the country, on the next they have overspread the whole land, and fill the air with their shrill cry." The swift (cypselus) is ordinarily classed with the swallow, which it resembles in its flight, habits, and migration. (2.) Heb. deror, i.e., "the bird of freedom" (Ps. 84:3; Prov. 26:2), properly rendered swallow, distinguished for its swiftness of flight, its love of freedom, and the impossibility of retaining it in captivity. In Isa. 38:14 and Jer. 8:7 the word thus rendered ('augr) properly means "crane" (as in the R.V.).
swallow in Smith's Bible Dictionary
Heb. deror in #Ps 84:3, Pr 26:2| Heb. 'agur in #Isa 38:14, Jer 8:7| but "crane" is more probably the true signification of 'agur [CRANE]). The rendering of the Authorized Version for deror seems correct. The characters ascribed in the passages where the names occur are strictly applicable to the swallow, viz., its swiftness of flight, its meeting in the buildings of the temple, its mournful, garrulous note, and its regular migrations, shared indeed in common with several others. Many species of swallow occur in Israel. All those common in England are found.
swallow in Schaff's Bible Dictionary
SWAL'LOW . In Ps 84:3 there is reference to this bird's habit of making its nest in all buildings to which it can gain access. Swallows still rear their young about the mosques which occupy the site of Solomon's temple, and circle above these The Swift. hallowed places as of old. In Palestine and other Eastern countries they are so rarely disturbed that they often build within reach of the hand. The incessant and rapid flight of this bird explains Prov 26:2. In Jer 8:7 and Isa 38:14 another word is found, which seems to refer to the swift, a bird of the swallow family and a regular migrant, which in Palestine the The Purple Gallinule. swallow is not. Its harsh and constant cry is specially appropriate to the second passage. Several species of swifts and swallows inhabit the Holy Land and breed in the cliffs or about buildings.
swallow in Fausset's Bible Dictionary
deror, from darar, "free, spontaneous motion" (Psalm 84:3). (See BIRD.) 'Agur is probably the "crane", from ga'ar "to chatter", as Latin grus is related to garrio, in Isaiah 38:14, and sus (the Italian zisilla) the "swallow": "like a swallow or a crane." In Proverbs 26:2 the sense is "as the bird ("sparrow") by wandering, as the swallow (deror) by flying, never lights upon us, but flies to the winds, so the curse for which we have given no just cause shall not come" to hurt us; contradicting the common superstition that a curse brings its fulfilment, however undeserved; nay Providence shields His people from Satan's and his agents' malice. Balaam could not curse Israel whom God had blessed (Deuteronomy 23:5), nor Shimei David, nay God requited David good instead (2 Samuel 16:5-12; Psalm 109:28).