kit ('ayyah; iktinos; Latin Milvus ictinus or regalis):
A medium-sized member of the hawk tribe (see HAWK). This bird is 27 inches long, of bright reddish-brown color, has sharply pointed wings and deeply forked tail. It is supposed to have exceptionally piercing eyes. It takes moles, mice, young game birds, snakes and frogs, as well as carrion for food. Its head and facial expression are unusually eagle-like. It was common over Palestine in winter, but bred in the hills of Galilee and rough mountainous places, so it was less conspicuous in summer. It is among the lists of abominations (see Leviticus 11:14 and Deuteronomy 14:13). It is notable that this is the real bird intended by Job to be used as that whose eye could not trace the path to the silver mine:
"That path no bird of prey knoweth,
Neither hath the falcon's eye seen it" (Job 28:7).
The word used here in the original Hebrew is 'ayyah, which was the name for kite. Our first translators used "vulture"; our latest efforts give "falcon," a smaller bird of different markings, not having the kite's reputation for eyesight.
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