Posted: April 12, 2013 in books

Image Put up two for those of you who are superstitious 🙂

There are probably loads of posts about magpies and the myth behind them, we all know how the rhyme goes:

One for sorrow

Two for joy

Three for a girl

Four for a boy

Five for silver

Six for gold

Seven for a secret never to be told

I suppose it all boils down to whether you are superstitious or not. Personally I think one for sorrow is the fact that you are now searching for another or standing there saluting a bird 🙂

I do have my superstitious moments when the mood strikes but what is more fascinating is that apart from being beautiful birds they are also very clever.

They can mimic many other birds and animal sounds, a single magpie has a talent of layering sound so that it appears there are several magpies rather than one (useful in survival tactics). They are well known to be thief’s especially when it comes to something shiny, and they are one of the few animals (and the only bird) that can look in a mirror and know that it is their reflection and not another magpie.

The original phrase ‘a single magpie in spring, foul weather will bring’ has some amount of truth to it as magpies do travel in pairs when the weather is fair so they can also give you a hint of what the weather will be like 🙂

Another interesting myth was that the magpie was believed to represent the devil. The church started a rumour that the tongue of a magpie contained a drop of blood from the devil. It was then said that if you cut the tongue of a magpie to let out the drop of blood it would then be capable of human speech.

Now that would be creepy 🙂

  1. Jane Risdon says:

    I like them and they are very pretty birds. Of course they are notorious for stealing bright things and my later Nanna had a diamond broach taken by one who come into the bedroom window and took it from her dressing table…she tried to chase it but of course it took off and it was gone forever. Mum always salutes them when she sees them and says something like ‘Good morning Mr Magpie,’ for luck. I have not taken to saluting or talking to them – yet. Enjoyed this Linda. 🙂

  2. Wow, I always heard that they steal from houses but I’ve never actually seen it myself or known anyone to have it happen to them. I’d probably freak out if one came into my house 🙂 I am guilty of occasionally saluting them but mostly I just love to watch them 🙂

    • Jane Risdon says:

      Linda I have had a bird inside the house more than once. In Germany one sat on the end of my bed and when I woke up,I nearly died when I saw it watching me. A huge blackbird. Then when we moved into our second home one was inside the office and still to this day we have no idea how it got in and the builders didn’t see it. I have written a short story called The Black Birds which is quite funny about a bird that got inside a house and what happened next. Not based my experience but someone in my family – I am laughing as I think of it now. It is supposed to be good luck when a bird is inside….not when they mess everywhere it isn’t!!

      • lol I can imagine, luckily I have never had to face that, especially one sitting on the end of the bed. Still you got a story out of it 🙂 you have so many interesting stories Jane I wish my life was as eventful as yours 🙂

      • Jane Risdon says:

        Lol you crack me up…live as long as me and you will have stories too….and your life is interesting, you have written a book and published it and have another on the way. your kids and grand kids will talk about their Nanna, the author one day…they will be in awe and you will be immortal. 🙂

  3. Lol well for now I will just have to rely on my imagination, hopefully I will make my kids proud although they will have to wait until they are 18 to read them 🙂

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