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As the Crow Flies

Flock of crows in overcast. As the crow flies sky

As the Crow Flies Definition

As the crow flies. The most direct path between two locations, usually a straight line.

As the Crow Flies Examples

  • If your looking for the Waffle House it’s about a quarter mile due north as the crow flies. But if your driving you’ll need to take the road around Elk Hill making it closer to a mile.
  • Hiking through the woods as the crow flies knocked close to an hour off our expected time and we made it to base camp just before sunset.


The seasons and the years came and went…and always…one was, as the crow flies, about 2,000 km away – but from where? – and day by day hour by hour, with every beat of the pulse, one lost more and more of one’s qualities, became less comprehensible to oneself, increasingly abstract.

W. G. Sebald, The Emigrants

How far did they fly? Five and a half thousand as the crow. Or: from Indianness to Englishness, an immeasurable distance. Or, not very far at all, because they rose from one great city, fell to another. The distance between cities is always small; a villager, travelling ahundred miles to town, traverses emptier, darker, more terrifying space.

Salman Rushdie, The Satanic Verses

As the Crow Flies Origin

We cut over the fields at the back with him between us – straight as the crow flies – through hedge and ditch.

Charles Dickens, Oliver Twist

This idiom’s origin is believed to come from a line in the novel Olive Twist by Charles Dickens. It was published in chapters starting in 1837.

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