WFT- corvine

24 June 2009

The Merriam-Webster Word of the Day for June 23rd was corvine:

of or relating to the crows : resembling a crow

This is the etymological information they provided:

Few people crow about "corvine" — it's not often you'll come across the word — but it has been part of the English language since the mid-17th century. Like most taxonomic terms, "corvine" has a purely Latin pedigree. "Corvine" is from Latin "corvinus," which in turn is from Latin "corvus," meaning "raven." (The word "raven" itself is from the Old English term "hraefn," which is akin to "hraban," the Old High German word for "raven," and also to "corvus.") Another word from "corvus" is "cormorant," which refers to a dark-colored seabird and comes from Old French words meaning "raven" and "of the sea."

There are a number of stories in Scripture about ravens:

  • Noah sent out a raven from the ark (Genesis 8:7)
  • Ravens are listed among the animals which are unsuitable for food (Leviticus 11:15 and Deuteronomy 14:14)
  • G-d sends ravens to bring food for Elijah at the Cherith brook (1 Kings 17:4, 6)
  • Ravens are listed among the things that only G-d has done when He rebukes Job (Job 38:41... read the whole chapter.  "Gird up your loins like a man"... ouch).
  • The Psalmist reiterates this message in Psalm 147:9.
  • The wise king Solomon warns children against an "eye that mocks a father and scorns a mother" for ravens of the valley will pick it out (Proverbs 30:17).
  • Messiah, Himself, told his disciples to "consider the ravens" in Luke 12:24.
  • Ravens are indeed mentioned throughout Scripture.
  • Song of Songs uses a raven to picture the blackness of the hair of the woman's beloved (Song of Songs 5:11)

Isaiah prophesies that the owl and raven will dwell in Zion after its desolation (Isaiah 34:11)

Last modified on 07 January 2017

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