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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Not very magical, still... » » What's in a name (of a group)? (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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S2000magician
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My wife and I were talking about the many special names for groups of animals. Off the top of my head:

  • Pride of lions
  • Covey of quail
  • Herd of cattle (or goats or horses or lots of other mammals)
  • Flock of sheep (or birds in flight)
  • Murder of crows
  • Pod of whales
  • Mischief of rats
  • School of fish
  • Cyclone of scorpions
  • Pack of wolves (or dogs)
  • Gaggle of geese
  • Swarm of bees (or grasshoppers or mosquitos or other flying insects)
  • Clutch of chicks

Are there others I've missed?

Any ideas where they originated? Some are, well, weird.
0pus
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A Parliament of owls

An Exaltation of larks
S2000magician
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Quote:
On Jul 22, 2017, 0pus wrote:
A Parliament of owls

An Exaltation of larks

Awesome!
S2000magician
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Courtesy of my wife:

A bubble of hippos.

A raft of ducks (or other waterfowl resting on the water).
TomBoleware
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Army of Ants.

Tom
"Entrepreneurs are willing to work 80 hours a week to avoid working 40 hours a week"--Lori Greiner

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Greg Arce
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A faro of card guys
A harness of dove workers
A billet of mentalists
A pad of close up workers
A Café of magicians.
Smile

Greg

P.S. Some that I already like have been mentions, but a few other:
A swarm of bees
A venture of vultures
A watch of nightingales
A cackle of hyenas
A memory of elephants
A troop of baboons... perfect for Planet of the Apes
One of my favorite quotes: "A critic is a legless man who teaches running."
S2000magician
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Thanks Tom and Greg!

Greg: your first list was great!

Wouldn't it be great if a group of penguins were known as a haberdashery?
Greg Arce
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How about a tux of penguins?

Greg
One of my favorite quotes: "A critic is a legless man who teaches running."
Greg Arce
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Oh, I forgot one I heard awhile back that seemed to fit: A cauldron of bats

Greg
One of my favorite quotes: "A critic is a legless man who teaches running."
Dannydoyle
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Isn't it a Murder of Crows?
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
S2000magician
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Quote:
On Jul 22, 2017, Dannydoyle wrote:
Isn't it a Murder of Crows?

Um . . . yup:

Quote:
On Jul 22, 2017, S2000magician wrote:
Off the top of my head:
  • Murder of crows
tommy
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You are a den of vipers and thieves. I intend to rout you out, and by the eternal God, I will rout you out.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

Tommy
Dannydoyle
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Quote:
On Jul 23, 2017, S2000magician wrote:
Quote:
On Jul 22, 2017, Dannydoyle wrote:
Isn't it a Murder of Crows?

Um . . . yup:

Quote:
On Jul 22, 2017, S2000magician wrote:
Off the top of my head:
  • Murder of crows


Ahh crap. My bad sorry.

Wow I'm smart enough to repeat what is written. I guess that is a step up for me.

How about a lone idiot? That is me! Nobody wants to bother to name a group of us.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Dannydoyle
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Ok I may have missed my 2 favorites, a troop of Apes and a congregation of Alligators.

Each amusing in their own way to me. Provided nobody wrote them already.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
ed rhodes
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A Congress of Useless Men? Thanks to John Adams for that one.
"There's no time to lose," I heard her say.
"Catch your dreams before they slip away."
"Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you could lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?"
arthur stead
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When I played soccer, I hit
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A handful of NVMS contributors?
Arthur Stead
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Magnus Eisengrim
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A circle of jerks?
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.--Yeats
stoneunhinged
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Quote:
On Jul 23, 2017, Magnus Eisengrim wrote:
A circle of jerks?


:)

One of the perks of my job is access to the OED. Here's some of the etymology:

pride of lions: < proud adj., with alteration of the stem vowel by analogy with such pairs as Old English fyllu fill n.1 beside full full adj., lengu lengh n. beside lang long adj.1, hǣlu heal n. beside hāl hale adj., etc., which ultimately show abstract nouns with i-mutation derived from adjectives in Germanic. Compare Old Icelandic prýði (feminine noun) ornament, gallantry, bravery < prúðr (adjective; see proud adj.).

covey of quail: Middle English, < Old French covée, modern French couvée brood = Italian covata < Romance type *cub-āta, lit. a hatching, < Latin cubāre, Italian covare, French couver to sit, incubate, hatch.

herd of cattle: Common Germanic: Old English heord strong feminine = Old Low German *herda (Middle Low German herde), Old High German herta (Middle High German hert(e, German herde), Old Norse hjǫrð (Swedish, Danish hjord), Gothic hairda < Old Germanic *herdâ- = pre-Germanic *kerdhâ: compare Sanskrit çárdha-s troop, Old Church Slavonic črêda herd, flock.

flock of sheep: Old English flocc = Old Norse flokkr (Swedish flock, Danish flok).

murder of crows: Origin uncertain; probably the same word as murder n.1 (perhaps alluding to the crow's traditional association with violent death, or, as suggested in quot. 1939, to its harsh and raucous cry).

I'll stop there. I'm just showing off. Of course, y'all can also access the OED. You just have to pay, and I don't.
S2000magician
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Pounce of tigers
Terrible Wizard
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Troop of baboons.
Shrewdness of apes
Sloth of bears
Paddling of ducks
Busyness of ferrets
Flamboyance of flamingoes
Skulk of foxes
Smack of jellyfish
Plague of locusts
Ostentation of peacocks
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