a murmuration of starlings

Απλώς το άκουσα σήμερα το πρωί στο BBC, δεν έχω κάνει καμιά έρευνα για το αν υπάρχει κάτι ελληνικό, αλλά το θέαμα είναι γνωστό και υπέροχο, και το βάζω εδώ να υπάρχει. Πρόκειται για τα κοπάδια των ψαρονιών (starlings) με τα γνωστά μοτίβα κίνησης, που βλέπουμε και στα μέρη μας. Το BBC έλεγε πως ο αριθμός τους στη Βρετανία έχει μειωθεί πολύ τις τελευταίες δεκαετίες.

OED:
¶2.2 A term for a flock (of starlings).
   One of many alleged group terms cited in the first source: revived and popularized in the 20th c.

   c 1470 in Hors Shepe & G. etc. (Caxton 1479, Roxb. repr.) 30 A murmeracion of stares.    1932 Auden in New Statesman 16 July 69/1 Patterns a murmuration of starlings Rising in joy over wolds unwittingly weave.    1938 Times 6 Jan. 15/5 Great murmurations of starlings are often represented as a peculiar phenomenon of our own times.    1946 M. Peake Titus Groan 306 The clearing ended where a derelict stone building‥held back a grove of leafless elms, where a murmuration of starlings was gathered.    1966 Sunday Mail Mag. (Brisbane) 6 Mar. 6/4 Starlings when they're on the wing have to labor under the collective title of murmuration.
 

CoastalFog

New member
Hi Costas (or Gus as some Greek Americans call themselves)
Thx for your fun post, even though the OED quote seems to have too many typos in one paragraph!

Unlike flock, this particular noun murmuration is reserved for exclusive use with starlings! Per Wikipedia: A flock of starlings is called a murmuration.

Clicking on murmuration will take you to Wikipedia's --ever incomplete--List of collective nouns In English (περιληπτικά ουσιαστικά).
 

nickel

Administrator
Staff member
Από τα αγαπημένα μου, μαζί με το «an exaltation of larks» και το «a congregation of magpies».

even though the OED quote seems to have too many typos in one paragraph!

Δεν ξέρω ποιο λάθος εννοείς — όχι, υποθέτω την ορθογραφία των παλιών αγγλικών. Ενδιαφέρον έχει το άλμα από το 1470 στον Auden του 1932. Η φράση (a murmuration of starlings) απαντούσε στο μεσοδιάστημα μόνο σε λίστες με τα περιληπτικά.
 
Ενδιαφέρον έχει το άλμα από το 1470 στον Auden του 1932. Η φράση (a murmuration of starlings) απαντούσε στο μεσοδιάστημα μόνο σε λίστες με τα περιληπτικά.
Ε, ναι· γι' αυτό λέει το OED "revived and popularized in the 20th c."
 

daeman

Administrator
Staff member
...
Precision of Lexicographers

People often write in about the conventional terms for groups of animals and people, especially birds, such as parliament of rooks or murder of crows. Many of these, including tiding of magpies, murmuration of starlings, unkindness of ravens, and exaltation of larks, are poetic inventions that one can trace back to the fifteenth century.

The first collection in English is The Book of St Albans of 1486, an early printed work from a small press at St Albans that used worn-out type that had been discarded by William Caxton. The book is in three parts, on hawking, hunting and heraldry, and is almost certainly a compilation of earlier works, probably written originally in French. The part on hunting is inscribed with the name of Dame Juliana Barnes, who is traditionally supposed to have been prioress of the nunnery of Sopwell near St Albans, though almost nothing is known about her (and her name might have been Berners, or Bernes).

What is certain is that the book became hugely popular. It was reprinted at Westminster the same year by the famous Wynkyn de Worde. In this version an extra section appeared with the title Treatyse on Fysshynge with an Angle, that is, angling or rod fishing. In the sixteenth century the book was reprinted so many times that it is hard to keep track of the editions. It has been said that its “circulation for a long time vied with and perhaps exceeded that of every other contemporary production of the press of lesser eminence than Holy Writ”.


This popularity kept the lists of terms for beasts and birds in people’s minds. Their memory was perpetuated in later centuries by antiquarians such as Joseph Strutt, whose Sports and Pastimes of England was published in 1801. Though some of Dame Juliana’s terms, such as business of ferrets, fall of woodcocks, and shrewdness of apes are wonderful to read and have a certain resonance, nobody seems to have used them in real life (and some are now mysterious, such as cete of badgers or dopping of sheldrake, because we no longer have the vocabulary to appreciate them).


Many that refer to natural history have some basis in animal behaviour. A parliament of rooks derives from the way the birds noisily congregate in their nests in tall trees; an exaltation of larks is a poetic comment on the climb of the skylark high into the sky while uttering its twittering song; a murmuration of starlings is a muted way to describe the chattering of a group of those birds as they come into roost each evening; unkindness of ravens refers to an old legend that ravens push their young out of the nest to survive as best they can; a spring of teal is an apt description of the way they bound from their nests when disturbed.


Some are witty comments on daily life, such as drunkship of cobblers and eloquence of lawyers. A few are apparently self-mocking, like superfluity of nuns (though the saying probably pre-dates any link with the semi-mythical Dame Juliana). This gently humorous approach has continued down the years, and updated examples frequently emerge from the fruitful imaginations of jokesters even today, such as intrigue of politicians, tedium of golfers, addition of mathematicians, expense of consultants, or clutch of car mechanics. Type “collective nouns” into any Web search engine: you’ll find dozens of sites featuring them, though the level of wit is sadly variable.


Here’s an ancient joke on the subject: Four scholars at Oxford were making their way down the street, and happened to see a group of ladies of the evening. “What’s this?” said the first. “A jam of tarts?” “Nay,” said the second, “an essay of Trollope’s.” “Rather, a flourish of strumpets,” advanced the third. “No, gentlemen,” concluded the last. “Here we have an anthology of pros.”

We’ve got to make a distinction, of course, between these fanciful or poetic collective names and the many examples we use every day, like pride of lions, pack of dogs, flight of stairs, flock of birds, string of racehorses, and gaggle of geese. These are common and unremarkable, though in some cases hardly less exotic and mysterious in origin than any in The Book of St Albans all those years ago.


[For a modern work, see An Exaltation of Larks by James Lipton, published by Penguin Books. I found it disappointing, as it couples too many illustrations with too few words, but it is well-known and popular.]

www.worldwidewords.org/articles/collectives.htm


A murder of crows

a logorrhea of lexicographers
a babble of lexicographers

:-)
 
...
Όμορφη λέξη, κι ακόμη πιο όμορφο θέαμα:


Murmuration (on Vimeo, by islandsandrivers.com)
A chance encounter and shared moment with one of natures greatest and most fleeting phenomena.
 

Earion

Moderator
Staff member
Υπέροχο. Έτσι έλεγαν οι παλιοί ότι έπεφταν τα ορτύκια τον παλιό καιρό στο Πόρτο Κάγιο, στη Μάνη.
 

daeman

Administrator
Staff member
...
Startled starlings start their flight
Startling falcon has to fight
Starting startling starlit night
Startling starlings' future bright

Earthflight (Winged Planet) - Peregrine Falcon Hunts Starlings in Rome


Or a mirthful daeman
Could be even you :-)



... Now who was the murmurator?

Scientists call on public to help solve mystery of starlings' aerial displays
The Guardian, 17 October 2014

Dr Anne Goodenough from the University of Gloucestershire, who is leading the project, said that although experts do not know for certain the reason behind the aerial displays, several theories have been aired.

“Probably the biggest theory is the idea of safety in numbers – it’s an anti-predator strategy. They are vulnerable to aerial predators, things like peregrine falcons and short-eared owls, when they’re in flight.

“If you’ve got quite a big, swirling flock of birds, that creates a mesmerising sight. And that in itself – that movement, that motion – creates a situation where predators are actually confused and then can’t focus on any one individual bird to pick out and predate,” she said.
[...]

"But that isn't good enough," said Anne, Dr Goodenough.
 
Collective nouns - Usefuk links

What do you call a group of ...?
http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/words/what-do-you-call-a-group-of

List of English terms of venery, by animal
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_English_terms_of_venery,_by_animal

Collective Nouns
http://rinkworks.com/words/collective.shtml

What do You Call a Group of Birds?
http://www.lyberty.com/encyc/articles/murder.html

Animals - Some Collective Nouns
http://www.herbweb.org/animals-collective-nouns.html

Precision of Lexicographers
http://www.worldwidewords.org/articles/collectives.htm

Who decides on the right collective noun for something?
http://blog.oxforddictionaries.com/2012/08/collective-nouns
 

daeman

Administrator
Staff member

Precision of Lexicographers

People often write in about the conventional terms for groups of animals and people, especially birds, such as parliament of rooks or murder of crows. Many of these, including tiding of magpies, murmuration of starlings, unkindness of ravens, and exaltation of larks, are poetic inventions that one can trace back to the fifteenth century.
[...]

www.worldwidewords.org/articles/collectives.htm

A murder of crows

a logorrhea of lexicographers
a babble of lexicographers

:-)
OK, διαγωνισμός:

Ποιος είναι ο καλύτερος περιληπτικός όρος για τα μέλη αυτού του φόρουμ, δηλαδή στη φράση «a(n) ~ of Lexilogists»; Αποκλείεται το «a logorrhea of Lexilogists».

Έπαθλο: δωρεάν ευωχία στην επόμενη σύναξη του Λεξιλογιακού,
A Punxsutawney of Lexilogists. A re-collection of posts.
 

daeman

Administrator
Staff member
...
Αφού τo murmuration προέρχεται από τον ήχο, η αντίστοιχη λέξη στα Ελληνικά θα ήταν το μουρμούρισμα ή το μουρμουρητό.

murmuration:
1350-1400; Medieval Latin murmuratio ‎(“murmuring, grumbling”). The "starling" sense is probably derived from the sound of the very large groups that starlings form at dusk.

murmur:
From Proto-Indo-European *mormur-, *mur- ‎(“to mutter”). Reduplication points to imitative, onomatopoeic origin. Cognate with Sanskrit मर्मर ‎(marmara, “rustling sound, murmur”), Ancient Greek μορμύρω ‎(mormúrō, “to roar, boil”), Lithuanian mùrmėti ‎(“to mutter, murmur, babble”), Old High German murmurōn, murmulōn ‎(“to mumble, murmur”), Old Norse murra ‎(“to grumble, mumble”), Old Armenian մռմռամ ‎(mṙmṙam).


[FONT=&quot]Ή αν θέλετε τρισχιλιετή, ο μορμύρος από το μορμύρω, συγγενές με το murmur, ηχοποίητο.
[/FONT]Μόνο που μορμύρος / μόρμυρος σήμαινε το ψάρι μουρμούρα:

νεοελλ.: ζωολ. γένος ισοσπόνδυλων τελεόστεων ιχθύων τής οικογένειας τών μορμυριδών
αρχ.: είδος θαλάσσιου ψαριού, η σημερινή μουρμούρα.

[ΕΤΥΜΟΛ. Η λ. προέρχεται από το ρ. μορμύρω «μουρμουρίζω, παφλάζω», λόγω τού θορύβου που κάνει το ψάρι κατά την κίνηση του. Κατ' άλλους, πρόκειται για μεσογειακή λ. Τη λ. δανείστηκε η λατ. με τη μορφή murmillo «ξιφομάχος με γαλατικό κράνος στην κορυφή τού οποίου υπάρχει ψάρι»].


Κάπου είδα την πρόταση «ριπιδισμοί», προφανώς από το ρήμα ριπίζω και, για επίσημο ύφος, νομίζω πως τα καταφέρνει οπτικά, μαζί με έναν απόηχο.

Για απόδοση κατανοητή απ' όλους όμως, στη γλώσσα που μιλάμε σήμερα, το σκίρτημα των ψαρονιών με θέλγει για την εικόνα που δίνει, της ξαφνικής αλλαγής πορείας, και για τη χαρά που μεταφέρει γι' αυτό το εξαιρετικό θέαμα.


I'd suggest and humbly mumble
Lexicographers might grumble
lest the starlings rumbling tumble
but I'll smile and off I'll amble
 

daeman

Administrator
Staff member



Award-winning image shows murmuration of starlings in shape of giant bird


Μετασμήνος.
 

daeman

Administrator
Staff member
a collocation of scientific collective nouns

278569743_167287919062874_5551252549750427177_n.jpg


+ (αντιγραμμένα):

a stratum of archaeologists
a clade of palaeontologists
a formation of geologists
a well of petroleum geologists
a conduit of vulcanologists
a flood of hydrologists
a cell of biologists
a plague of microbiologists
a pit of herpetologists
a jungle of zoologists
a swarm of entomologists
a node of neuroscientists
a sequence of molecular geneticists
a nexus of psychologists
a murder of forensic scientists
a block of urban planners
a cloud of meteorologists
a sphincter of proctologists
 
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