any of numerous long-legged, long-necked, usually long-billed birds of the family Ardeidae, including the true herons, egrets, night herons, and bitterns.

1275–1325; Middle English heiro(u)n, hero(u)n < Middle French hairon (French héron) < Germanic; compare Old High German heigir

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World English Dictionary
heron (ˈhɛrən)
any of various wading birds of the genera Butorides, Ardea, etc, having a long neck, slim body, and a plumage that is commonly grey or white: family Ardeidae, order Ciconiiformes
[C14: from Old French hairon, of Germanic origin; compare Old High German heigaro, Old Norse hegri]

Heron (ˈhɪərɒn)
1.  same as Hero
2.  Patrick. 1920--99, British abstract painter and art critic

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

c.1120s, from O.Fr. hairon, from Frank. *haigiro (cf. O.H.G. heigaro "heron"), from P.Gmc. *khraigran-, from PIE *qriq-, perhaps imitative of its cry (cf. O.C.S. kriku "cry, scream," Lith. kryksti "to shriek"). O.E. cognate hraga did not survive into M.E.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Bible Dictionary

Heron definition

(Lev. 11:19; Deut. 14:18), ranked among the unclean birds. The Hebrew name is _'anaphah_, and indicates that the bird so named is remarkable for its angry disposition. "The herons are wading-birds, peculiarly irritable, remarkable for their voracity, frequenting marshes and oozy rivers, and spread over the regions of the East." The Ardea russeta, or little golden egret, is the commonest species in Asia.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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