Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Birds (protected by superstitions).

 Birds.Bird’s-eye View. 
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
Birds (protected by superstitions).
Choughs are protected in Cornwall, because the soul of King Arthur migrated into a chough.   1
   The Hawk is held sacred by the Egyptians, because it is the form assumed by Ra or Horus.   2
   The Ibis is sacred in Egypt, and to kill one was at one time a capital offence. It is said that the god Thoth escaped (as an Ibis) from the pursuit of Typhon.   3
   Mother Carey’s Chickens, or Storm Petrels are protected by sailors, from a superstition that they are the living forms of the souls of deceased sailors.   4
   The Robin is protected, both from Christian tradition and nursery legend. (See ROBIN REDBREAST.)   5
   The Stork is a sacred bird in Sweden, from the legend that it flew round the cross, crying Styrka, Styrka, when Jesus was crucified. (See STORK.)   6
   Swans are superstitiously protected in Ireland from the legend of the Fionnuala (daughter of Lir), who was metamorphosed into a swan and condemned to wander in lakes and rivers till Christianity was introduced. (See Irish Melodies, Silent O’Moyle.)   7
        The bat (a winged animal) was regarded by the Caribs as a good angel, which protected their dwellings at night; and it was accounted sacrilegious to kill one.

 Birds.Bird’s-eye View. 


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