[Sca-cooks] crocodiles and magpies

Cindy Renfrow cindy at thousandeggs.com
Wed Mar 5 15:04:53 PST 2008

> Strange. My edition of Athenaeus (ed. Gulick)
> reads: "... ducks, pigeons, geese, sparrows, thrushes, larks,
> jays, swans, pelican, wagtails, crane---".
> It is in volume II, page 107. My edition is "1928, repr. 1987".

Sorry, I should have said I have the 1928 edition.

> "jays" instead of "magpies". That's not the same kind of bird?
> E.

> Magpies and jays are both members of the family Corvidae (as are  
> crows).  In
> Latin, "pica" appears to be used for both jays and magpies, so this is
> probably a case where the translators chose different meanings for the  
> same
> word.  Pica is now the genus name for magpies.
> Bear

As Bear says, Jays and magpies are closely related members of the Crow  
family. But according to the English Encyclopedia by Charles Knight  
(1867), p. 148 :
"P. cordata of Ray,  Corvus Pica of Linnaeus, our common Magpie, or  
Pianet, is,  there is hardly any doubt, the Κιττα of the Greeks."  It  
goes on to say that the word for Jay in Aristotle is Μαλακοκρανενς   
(-or something similar. The type is too small for me to see clearly.)  
Κιττα is the word used by Athenaeus.

The website is:


> This also turns up in a paper in JSTOR that talks about religion and  
> the
> meaning of tears.
> And when I search it, it comes up under crocodile tears.
> So where is this City of Apollo or the Tenterites?
> Apparently it's below Thebes on the Nile. The Tenterites are discussed
> in Hakluytus Posthumus: Contayning a History of the World in Sea.
> They are also discussed by George Sandys in his
> 1610 book of travels. See Andrew Hadfield's Amazons, Savages, and
> Machiavels. It's said that they eat the flesh of those they catch and
> sell the hides to merchants.
> Johnnae

Yes, indeed, we have to beware of foreigners and savages because  
everyone knows they're all cannibals!   ;-)


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