Chaetura pelagica
Swift Swift, n. 1. The current of a stream. [R.] --Walton. [1913 Webster]

2. (Zo["o]l.) Any one of numerous species of small, long-winged, insectivorous birds of the family {Micropodid[ae]}. In form and habits the swifts resemble swallows, but they are destitute of complex vocal muscles and are not singing birds, but belong to a widely different group allied to the humming birds. [1913 Webster]

Note: The common European swift ({Cypselus apus} syn. {Micropus apus}) nests in church steeples and under the tiles of roofs, and is noted for its rapid flight and shrill screams. It is called also {black martin}, {black swift}, {hawk swallow}, {devil bird}, {swingdevil}, {screech martin}, and {shriek owl}. The common American, or chimney, swift ({Ch[ae]tura pelagica}) has sharp rigid tips to the tail feathers. It attaches its nest to the inner walls of chimneys, and is called also {chimney swallow}. The Australian swift ({Ch[ae]tura caudacuta}) also has sharp naked tips to the tail quills. The European Alpine swift ({Cypselus melba}) is whitish beneath, with a white band across the breast. The common Indian swift is {Cypselus affinis}. See also {Palm swift}, under {Palm}, and {Tree swift}, under {Tree}. [1913 Webster]

3. (Zo["o]l.) Any one of several species of lizards, as the pine lizard. [1913 Webster]

4. (Zo["o]l.) The ghost moth. See under {Ghost}. [1913 Webster]

5. [Cf. {Swivel}.] A reel, or turning instrument, for winding yarn, thread, etc.; -- used chiefly in the plural. [1913 Webster]

6. The main card cylinder of a flax-carding machine. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

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