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2 definitions found

From: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)

 Spy, n.; pl. Spies
 1. One who keeps a constant watch of the conduct of others. “These wretched spies of wit.”
 2. Mil. A person sent secretly into an enemy's camp, territory, or fortifications, to inspect his works, ascertain his strength, movements, or designs, and to communicate such intelligence to the proper officer.
 Spy money, money paid to a spy; the reward for private or secret intelligence regarding the enemy.
 Spy Wednesday Eccl., the Wednesday immediately preceding the festival of Easter; -- so called in allusion to the betrayal of Christ by Judas Iscariot.
 Syn: -- See Emissary, and Scout.

From: Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary

    When the Israelites reached Kadesh for the first time, and were
    encamped there, Moses selected twelve spies from among the
    chiefs of the divisions of the tribes, and sent them forth to
    spy the land of Canaan (Num. 13), and to bring back to him a
    report of its actual condition. They at once proceeded on their
    important errand, and went through the land as far north as the
    district round Lake Merom. After about six weeks' absence they
    returned. Their report was very discouraging, and the people
    were greatly alarmed, and in a rebellious spirit proposed to
    elect a new leader and return to Egypt. Only two of the spies,
    Caleb and Joshua, showed themselves on this occasion
    stout-hearted and faithful. All their appeals and remonstrances
    were in vain. Moses announced that as a punishment for their
    rebellion they must now wander in the wilderness till a new
    generation should arise which would go up and posses the land.
    The spies had been forty days absent on their expedition, and
    for each day the Israelites were to be wanderers for a year in
    the desert. (See ESHCOL.)
      Two spies were sent by Joshua "secretly" i.e., unknown to the
    people (Josh. 2:1), "to view the land and Jericho" after the
    death of Moses, and just before the tribes under his leadership
    were about to cross the Jordan. They learned from Rahab (q.v.),
    in whose house they found a hiding-place, that terror had fallen
    on all the inhabitants of the land because of the great things
    they had heard that Jehovah had done for them (Ex. 15:14-16;
    comp. 23:27; Deut. 2:25; 11:25). As the result of their mission
    they reported: "Truly Jehovah hath delivered into our hands all
    the land; for even all the inhabitants of the country do faint
    because of us."