|1.||Compare hinny the sterile offspring of a male donkey and a female horse, used as a beast of burden|
|2.||any hybrid animal: a mule canary|
|3.||Also called: spinning mule a machine invented by Samuel Crompton that spins cotton into yarn and winds the yarn on spindles|
|4.||informal an obstinate or stubborn person|
|5.||slang a person who is paid to transport illegal drugs for a dealer|
|[C13: from Old French mul, from Latin mūlus ass, mule]|
|Part of Speech:||n|
|Definition:||See drug mule|
"The mule combines the strength of the horse with the endurance and surefootedness of the ass, and is extensively bred for certain employments for which it is more suited than either; it is ordinarily incapable of procreation. With no good grounds, the mule is a proverbial type of obstinacy." [OED]Properly, the offspring of a he-ass and a mare; that of a she-ass and a stallion is technically a hinny. Used allusively of hybrids and things of mixed nature. As a type of spinning machine, attested from 1797. Meaning "stubborn person" is from 1848; that of "narcotics smuggler or courier" first attested 1935. O.Fr. mul was replaced in Fr. by dim. form mulet, hence muleteer "mule driver" (1538), from Fr. muletier.
(Heb. pered), so called from the quick step of the animal or its power of carrying loads. It is not probable that the Hebrews bred mules, as this was strictly forbidden in the law (Lev. 19:19), although their use was not forbidden. We find them in common use even by kings and nobles (2 Sam. 18:9; 1 Kings 1:33; 2 Kings 5:17; Ps. 32:9). They are not mentioned, however, till the time of David, for the word rendered "mules" (R.V. correctly, "hot springs") in Gen. 36:24 (yemim) properly denotes the warm springs of Callirhoe, on the eastern shore of the Dead Sea. In David's reign they became very common (2 Sam. 13:29; 1 Kings 10:25). Mules are not mentioned in the New Testament. Perhaps they had by that time ceased to be used in Palestine.
see stubborn as a mule.