Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Look, Mommy. There's a Murder Up in the Sky.

Words are weird and I love them.  Like how a group of crows is called a murder.  As in, "A murder of crows just crapped all over my car."

A murder!  And it's just because an old lady said so.

In the 15th century, Dame Juliana Bernes ran an English nunnery called St. Albans.  While there, she wrote a book called The Book of Saint Albans.  (I know.  Clever girl, right?)  Anyway, in this book Ms. Bernes published a list of what she deemed the "proper" collective nouns for referring to any group of animals.

Because this was, like, 600 years ago, most of her suggestions have disappeared from our language.  But some of them have stuck around.  And that's why we have prides of lions, gaggles of geese, strings of ponies, and murders of crows.

And I already know what you're thinking.  Yes, I was totally popular in high school.

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