LAPWING. Arabic hudhud هدهد
The name in the Qur’an, Surah xxvii. 20, for the bird which carried the letter from King Solomon to the Queen of Sheba. [SOLOMON] It the of the Old Testament, Lev. xi. 19, Deut. xiv. 18. Greek The modern Hoopoe.
The commentators al-Jalalan and al-Baizawi say that Solomon, having finished the temple of Jerusalem, went in pilgrimage to Makkah, whence, having stayed as long as he pleased, he proceeded towards al-Yemen; leaving Makkah in the morning, be arrived by noon at San’a’, and being extremely delighted with the country, rested there. But wanting water to snake the ablution, he looked among the birds for the lap-wing, whose business it was to find it; for it is pretended she was sagacious or sharp-sighted to discover water underground, which the devils used to draw, after abs had marked the place by digging with her bill. They add that this bird was then taking a tour in the air, whence, seeing one of her companions alighting, she descended also, and having had a description given her by the other of the city of Snba’, whence she was just arrived, they. both went together to take a view of the place, and returned soon after Solomon had made the inquiry given in the Qur’an: “He reviewed the birds and said,’ How is it I do not see al-Hudhud? Is he, then, amongst the absent?
Based on Hughes, Dictionary of Islam