Middle English Dictionary Entry

flīen v.
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Entry Info

Definitions (Senses and Subsenses)

Note: Cp. flen.
(a) To fly with wings; ~ with winges; ~ in (bi) the lift (air); ~ on heigh (upon height); ~ (one's) wei; fleing kind, flying creature, birds; (b) comen flen, ~ fleing, to come flying; (c) hawk. fly at game; ~ to game.
Proverbs & sayings: flien for joie, be elated; ~ to heigh, be too ambitious; light as foul to ~; so longe flieth the flinder (buterflie) about the candel, [etc.]; so swithe so the foul flieth.
To move or pass through the atmosphere or the sky: (a) of the soul or a person: fly; ~ to heven, go to heaven; (b) of stars, light: move, pass; fleing sterre, shooting star; of thunder and lightning: dash, dart, rush; (c) of clouds, dust, etc.: drift, float; (d) alch. fliing, volatile.
(a) To move swiftly on land or water: hasten, hurry, rush, dash, charge; (b) of fire: to spread quickly, leap; (c) of rumors: to spread; fliing tales, ~ tidinges, rumors.
To move swiftly away from, or toward, something: (a) of missles and weapons: fly; leten flien, let fly, shoot (an arrow), hurl (a stone, etc.); leten flien at (someone), strike (someone); (b) of sparks, fire, lightning: burst or shoot forth; (c) of fragments: fly, be scattered; of a shield, a spear, etc.: ~ asonder, ~ on peces, go to pieces, be shattered.
(a) To fall or drop precipitously; ~ into the felde, ~ on felde, fall on the ground, be dashed to the ground; (b) to drop or leap violently (from a fixed position).