Bittern definition


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4 definitions found

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]:

  Bittern \Bit"tern\, n. [OE. bitoure, betore, bitter, fr. F.
     butor; of unknown origin.] (Zool.)
     A wading bird of the genus {Botaurus}, allied to the herons,
     of various species.
     [1913 Webster]

     Note: The common European bittern is {Botaurus stellaris}. It
           makes, during the brooding season, a noise called by
           Dryden bumping, and by Goldsmith booming. The American
           bittern is {Botaurus lentiginosus}, and is also called
           {stake-driver} and {meadow hen}. See {Stake-driver}.
           [1913 Webster]
     Note: The name is applied to other related birds, as the
           {least bittern} ({Ardetta exilis}), and the {sun
           [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]:

  Bittern \Bit"tern\, n. [From {Bitter}, a.]
     1. The brine which remains in salt works after the salt is
        concreted, having a bitter taste from the chloride of
        magnesium which it contains.
        [1913 Webster]
     2. A very bitter compound of quassia, cocculus Indicus, etc.,
        used by fraudulent brewers in adulterating beer. --Cooley.
        [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 2.0 [wn]:

       n : relatively small compact tawny-brown heron with nocturnal
           habits and a booming cry; found in marshes

From Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary [easton]:

     is found three times in connection with the desolations to come
     upon Babylon, Idumea, and Nineveh (Isa. 14:23; 34:11; Zeph.
     2:14). This bird belongs to the class of cranes. Its scientific
     name is Botaurus stellaris. It is a solitary bird, frequenting
     marshy ground. The Hebrew word (kippod) thus rendered in the
     Authorized Version is rendered "porcupine" in the Revised
     Version. But in the passages noted the kippod is associated with
     birds, with pools of water, and with solitude and desolation.
     This favours the idea that not the "porcupine" but the "bittern"
     is really intended by the word.

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