) KEY VERB: flew
z) KEY VERB: intr.
- To engage in flight, especially:
- To move through the air by means of wings or winglike parts.
- To travel by air: We flew to Dallas.
- To operate an aircraft or spacecraft.
- To rise in or be carried through the air by the wind: a kite flying above the playground.
- To float or flap in the air: pennants flying from the masthead.
- To move or be sent through the air with great speed: bullets flying in every direction; a plate that flew from my hands when I stumbled.
- To move with great speed; rush or dart: The children flew down the hall. Rumors were flying during their absence.
- To flee; escape.
- To hasten; spring: flew to her students' defense.
- To pass by swiftly: a vacation flying by; youth that is soon flown.
- To be dissipated; vanish: Their small inheritance was quickly flown.
past tense and past participle flied (fld) KEY Baseball To hit a fly ball.
- To undergo an explosive reaction; burst: The dropped plate flew into pieces. The motorist flew into a rage.
- Informal To gain acceptance or approval; go over: "However sophisticated the reasoning, this particular notion may not fly" (New York Times).
NOUN: pl. flies
- To cause to fly or float in the air: fly a kite; fly a flag.
- Nautical To operate under (a particular flag): a tanker that flies the Liberian flag.
- To pilot (an aircraft or a spacecraft).
- To carry or transport in an aircraft or a spacecraft: fly emergency supplies to a stricken area.
- To pass over or through in flight: flew the coastal route in record time.
- To perform in a spacecraft or an aircraft: flew six missions into space.
- To flee or run from: fly a place in panic.
- To avoid; shun: fly temptation.
PHRASAL VERB: fly at
- The act of flying; flight.
- A fold of cloth that covers a fastening of a garment, especially one on the front of trousers.
- The fastening or opening covered by such a fold.
- A flap that covers an entrance or forms a rooflike extension for a tent or the canopy of a vehicle.
- A flyleaf.
- Baseball A fly ball.
- The span of a flag from the staff to the outer edge.
- The outer edge of a flag.
- A flywheel.
- flies The area directly over the stage of a theater, containing overhead lights, drop curtains, and equipment for raising and lowering sets.
- Chiefly British A one-horse carriage, especially one for hire.
IDIOMS: fly high
- To attack fiercely; assault: The dogs flew at each other's throats.
fly off the handle Informal
- To be elated: They were flying high after their first child was born.
- To become suddenly enraged: flew off the handle when the train was finally canceled.
on the fly
- To shoot, hurl, or release: The troops let fly a volley of gunfire.
- To lash out; assault: The mayor let fly with an angry attack on her critics.
- On the run; in a hurry: took lunch on the fly.
- While in the air; in flight: caught the ball on the fly.
Middle English flien
, from Old English flogan
; see pleu-
in Indo-European rootsOTHER FORMS:flya·ble(Adjective)