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Swallow

Driver (PEQ [1955] p. 131) sees a clear distinction between derōr “swallow” and sūs “swift,” but the differentiation is not quite so simple. These birds belong to widely separated orders, yet they have developed on similar lines; they take all their food in the air, where they spend most of their daylight hours, and are almost helpless on the ground; many of them nest in man-made situations. Palestine has some six members of the swallow family (Hirundinidae); European and red-rumped swallows; house, sand and two crag martins. Two are resident and the others migratory. Ancient writers are unlikely to have distinguished swifts and swallows precisely. Hebrew derōr also means “liberty.” It has been suggested that this is a more general word including all insectivorous birds that feed on the wing. Either swallow or swift would fit the contexts of Psalm 84:3 and Proverbs 26:2 equally well. International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915) A small long-winged bird of exhaustless flight, be