from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Of or relating to aviation.
  • adjective Capable of or engaged in flight.
  • adjective Situated, extending, or functioning in the air.
  • adjective Swiftly moving; fleet.
  • adjective Done or performed swiftly in or as if in the air.
  • adjective Brief; hurried.
  • adjective Capable of swift deployment or response; extremely mobile.
  • adjective Nautical Not secured by spars or stays. Used of a sail.
  • noun Flight in an aircraft or spacecraft.
  • noun The piloting or navigation of an aircraft or spacecraft.
  • idiom (with flying colors) With complete or outstanding success.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The act of moving through the air on wings; flight.
  • noun plural Loose or floating waste of any kind.
  • Swift; equipped for swift motion: as, a flying party.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Moving in the air with, or as with, wings; moving lightly or rapidly; intended for rapid movement.
  • adjective (Mil.) a body of cavalry and infantry, kept in motion, to cover its own garrisons and to keep the enemy in continual alarm.
  • adjective (Mil.) artillery trained to rapid evolutions, -- the men being either mounted or trained to spring upon the guns and caissons when they change position.
  • adjective See under Bridge, and Camp.
  • adjective (Arch.) a contrivance for taking up the thrust of a roof or vault which can not be supported by ordinary buttresses. It consists of a straight bar of masonry, usually sloping, carried on an arch, and a solid pier or buttress sufficient to receive the thrust. The word is generally applied only to the straight bar with supporting arch.
  • adjective flags unfurled and waving in the air.
  • adjective to be victorious; to succeed thoroughly in an undertaking.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) a young female kangaroo.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) A meteor. See under Dragon.
  • adjective A spectral ship.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) See Flying fish, in the Vocabulary.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) see Flying fox in the vocabulary.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) either of two East Indian tree frogs of the genus Rhacophorus (Rhacophorus nigrapalmatus and Rhacophorus pardalis), having very large and broadly webbed feet, which serve as parachutes, and enable it to make very long leaps.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) a species of gurnard of the genus Cephalacanthus or Dactylopterus, with very large pectoral fins, said to be able to fly like the flying fish, but not for so great a distance.
  • adjective (Naut.) a sail extended outside of the standing jib, on the flying-jib boom.
  • adjective (Naut.) an extension of the jib boom.
  • adjective (Naut.) light sails carried only in fine weather.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) See Colugo.
  • adjective (Civil Engin.) a reconnoissance level over the course of a projected road, canal, etc.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) See Dragon, n. 6.
  • adjective (Mil.) a torch attached to a long staff and used for signaling at night.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) the opossum mouse (Acrobates pygmæus), a marsupial of Australia. Called also feathertail glider.
  • adjective (Mil.) a body of soldiers detailed to hover about an enemy.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) one of several species of small marsuupials of the genera Petaurus and Belideus, of Australia and New Guinea, having lateral folds like those of the flying squirrels. The sugar squirrel (Belideus sciureus), and the ariel (Belideus ariel), are the best known; -- called also squirrel petaurus and flying squirrel. See Sugar squirrel.
  • adjective the fly of a clock.
  • adjective (Mil.) the rapid construction of trenches (when the enemy's fire of case shot precludes the method of simple trenching), by means of gabions placed in juxtaposition and filled with earth.
  • adjective a shot fired at a moving object, as a bird on the wing.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) See Ballooning spider.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) an oceanic squid (Ommastrephes Bartramii syn. Sthenoteuthis Bartramii), abundant in the Gulf Stream, which is able to leap out of the water with such force that it often falls on the deck of a vessel.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) See Flying squirrel, in the Vocabulary.
  • adjective a start in a sailing race in which the signal is given while the vessels are under way.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective That which can fly.
  • adjective Brief or hurried.


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

fly +‎ -ing


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  • Mark Haisma doesn't like the term "flying winemaker."

    An Australian in Burgundy

  • Mark Haisma doesn't like the term "flying winemaker."

    An Australian in Burgundy

  • He had heard of the term flying saucers, better known as Unidentified Flying Objects.

    Encounter Group

  • True courage consists not in flying from the storms of life; but in braving and steering through them with prudence.

    The Coquette, or, The History of Eliza Wharton: A Novel Founded on Fact

  • "The term flying is hardly too strong to express the speed of the elevators," claim the directors, and after a complicated series of calculations, they proudly conclude that the elevators annually make "the enormous journey of ... nearly five times around the earth."

    Chicago Reader

  • There is a part where Kennedy speaks of the label flying out a new artist, and how the music is powerful, but no one wants to fully support or enjoy the band because no one wants to be to blame if the band and their release fails.


  • And that was obviously hurting that man, Chris Benoit, as he's doing -- this is what he calls his flying head butt, which is just painful to watch now.

    CNN Transcript Nov 7, 2007

  • The use of the term “Islamicfasciam” and the other term flying around lately “Clash of Civilazations” are disturbing.

    Think Progress » Kondrake: Rice and Hughes Convince Bush To Drop ‘Islamic Fascism’ From Speeches

  • The trick to flying is to throw yourself at the ground and miss.

    Weird Stuff

  • In the old days people used to see what they called flying saucers.



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  • "Flying isn't dangerous. Crashing is what's dangerous."

    - Pilot's Crib Sheet.

    February 12, 2009