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"grass mown," Old English heg (Anglian), hieg, hig (West Saxon) "grass cut or mown for fodder," from Proto-Germanic *haujam (cf. Old Norse hey, Old Frisian ha, Middle Dutch hoy, German Heu, Gothic hawi "hay"), literally "that which is cut," or "that which can be mowed," from PIE *kau- "to hew, strike" (cf. Old English heawan "to cut;" see hew). Slang phrase hit the hay (pre-1880) was originally "to sleep in a barn;" hay in the general figurative sense of "bedding" (e.g. roll in the hay) is from 1903.
properly so called, was not in use among the Hebrews; straw was used instead. They cut the grass green as it was needed. The word rendered "hay" in Prov. 27:25 means the first shoots of the grass. In Isa. 15:6 the Revised Version has correctly "grass," where the Authorized Version has "hay."
city, seat (1867) of Ellis county, central Kansas, U.S. It lies on Big Creek. The city was founded in 1867 after the establishment of Fort Hays (a frontier post built as Fort Fletcher in 1865). In 1876 Volga Germans settled the area on land ceded by the Kansas Pacific Railroad. The fort was abandoned in 1889; its blockhouse and guardhouse are preserved in the city's Frontier Historical Park. Oil fields in the vicinity began to be developed in 1936. The city is a trading centre and shipping point for an extensive wheat-growing and oil-producing area. It contains a large dryland agricultural experiment station and is the seat of Fort Hays State University (1902); the university's museum of natural history was founded in 1914. The Cathedral of the Plains (1909-11) is at nearby Victoria, and Cedar Bluff State Park is southwest of the city. Inc. 1885. Pop. (1990) 17,767; (2000) 20,013.