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5 definitions found
 for flyspeck
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Flyspeck \Fly"speck\ (fl[imac]"sp[e^]k), n.
     A speck or stain made by the excrement of a fly; hence, any
     insignificant dot.
     [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Flyspeck \Fly"speck\ (fl[imac]"sp[e^]k), v. t.
     To soil with flyspecks.
     [1913 Webster] flyswat

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

      adj 1: very small; "diminutive in stature"; "a lilliputian chest
             of drawers"; "her petite figure"; "tiny feet"; "the
             flyspeck nation of Bahrain moved toward democracy" [syn:
             bantam, diminutive, lilliputian, midget,
             petite, tiny, flyspeck]
      n 1: a tiny dark speck made by the excrement of a fly

From Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 :

  95 Moby Thesaurus words for "flyspeck":
     ace, atom, bespeckle, bespot, bit, bloodstain, blot, blotch, blur,
     brand, crumb, dab, daub, dole, dot, dram, dribble, driblet, drop,
     droplet, dwarf, eyesore, farthing, fleck, flick, fragment, freckle,
     gnat, gobbet, grain, granule, groat, hair, handful, iota, jot,
     little, little bit, macula, maculate, maculation, macule, mark,
     microbe, microorganism, midge, minim, minimum, minutia, minutiae,
     mite, modicum, molecule, mote, nutshell, ounce, particle, patch,
     pebble, pinch, pinhead, pinpoint, pittance, point, scrap, scruple,
     smear, smidgen, smirch, smitch, smouch, smudge, smut, smutch, snip,
     snippet, spatter, speck, speckle, splash, splatter, splotch,
     spoonful, spot, stain, stigma, taint, tarnish, thimbleful,
     tiny bit, tittle, trifling amount, trivia, vanishing point, whit

From The Devil's Dictionary (1881-1906) :

  FLY-SPECK, n.  The prototype of punctuation.  It is observed by
  Garvinus that the systems of punctuation in use by the various
  literary nations depended originally upon the social habits and
  general diet of the flies infesting the several countries.  These
  creatures, which have always been distinguished for a neighborly and
  companionable familiarity with authors, liberally or niggardly
  embellish the manuscripts in process of growth under the pen,
  according to their bodily habit, bringing out the sense of the work by
  a species of interpretation superior to, and independent of, the
  writer's powers.  The "old masters" of literature -- that is to say,
  the early writers whose work is so esteemed by later scribes and
  critics in the same language -- never punctuated at all, but worked
  right along free-handed, without that abruption of the thought which
  comes from the use of points.  (We observe the same thing in children
  to-day, whose usage in this particular is a striking and beautiful
  instance of the law that the infancy of individuals reproduces the
  methods and stages of development characterizing the infancy of
  races.)  In the work of these primitive scribes all the punctuation is
  found, by the modern investigator with his optical instruments and
  chemical tests, to have been inserted by the writers' ingenious and
  serviceable collaborator, the common house-fly -- _Musca maledicta_. 
  In transcribing these ancient MSS, for the purpose of either making
  the work their own or preserving what they naturally regard as divine
  revelations, later writers reverently and accurately copy whatever
  marks they find upon the papyrus or parchment, to the unspeakable
  enhancement of the lucidity of the thought and value of the work. 
  Writers contemporary with the copyists naturally avail themselves of
  the obvious advantages of these marks in their own work, and with such
  assistance as the flies of their own household may be willing to
  grant, frequently rival and sometimes surpass the older compositions,
  in respect at least of punctuation, which is no small glory.  Fully to
  understand the important services that flies perform to literature it
  is only necessary to lay a page of some popular novelist alongside a
  saucer of cream-and-molasses in a sunny room and observe "how the wit
  brightens and the style refines" in accurate proportion to the
  duration of exposure.

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