In their wild state doves generally build their nests in the clefts of rocks, but when domesticated "dove-cots" are prepared for them (Cant 2:14 ; Jeremiah 48:28 ; Isaiah 60:8 ). The dove was placed on the standards of the Assyrians and Babylonians in honour, it is supposed, of Semiramis ( Jeremiah 25:38 ; Vulg., "fierceness of the dove;" Compare Jeremiah 46:16 ; 50:16 ). Doves and turtle-doves were the only birds that could be offered in sacrifice, as they were clean according to the Mosaic law ( Genesis 15:9 ; Leviticus 5:7 ; 12:6 ; Luke 2:24 ). The dove was the harbinger of peace to Noah ( Genesis 8:8 Genesis 8:10 ). It is often mentioned as the emblem of purity ( Psalms 68:13 ). It is a symbol of the Holy Spirit ( Genesis 1:2 ; Matthew 3:16 ; Mark 1:10 ; Luke 3:22 ; John 1:32 ); also of tender and devoted affection (Cant 1:15 ; 2:14 ). David in his distress wished that he had the wings of a dove, that he might fly away and be at rest ( Psalms 55:6-8 ). There is a species of dove found at Damascus "whose feathers, all except the wings, are literally as yellow as gold" ( 68:13 ).
M.G. Easton M.A., D.D., Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Third Edition,
published by Thomas Nelson, 1897. Public Domain, copy freely.
[S] indicates this entry was also found in Smith's Bible Dictionary
Bibliography InformationEaston, Matthew George. "Entry for Dove". "Easton's Bible Dictionary".