Definition for EA'GLE

EA'GLE, n. [Fr. aigle; Sp. aguila; It. aquila; L. aquila. Qu. from his beak, Ch. Heb. עקל, to be crooked, (see Buxtorf,) or Pers. اِجْل.]

  1. A rapacious fowl of the genus Falco. The beak is crooked and furnished with a cere at the base, and the tongue is cloven or bifid. There are several species, as the bald or white-headed eagle, the sea eagle or ossifrage, the golden eagle, &c. The eagle is one of the largest species of fowls, has a keen sight, and preys on small animals, fish, &c. He lives to a great age; and it is said that one died at Vienna, after a confinement of a hundred and four years. On account of the elevation and rapidity of his flight, and of his great strength, he is called the king of birds. Hence the figure of an eagle was made the standard of the Romans, and a spread eagle is a principal figure in the arms of the United States of America. Hence also in heraldry, it is one of the most noble bearings in armory.
  2. A gold coin of the United States, of the value of ten dollars, or forty-five shillings sterling.
  3. A constellation in the northern hemisphere, having its right wing contiguous to the equinoctial. Encyc.

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