Magpie Pica pica, Pie bavarde.

5 occurrences (1 pie, 1 pies, 1 magot-pies)

The name of the magpie has given way to numerous speculations. James HARTING thought that it had something to do with "maggots" upon which Magpies often feed, whereas Emma PHIPSON said that it comes from the French "magot" alluding to the Magpie's propensity to steal glittering objects. And Kenneth MUIR, editor of the Arden Macbeth, is concerned with the link with the French diminutive of "Marguerite" which is "Margot".

What is clear, even to the eyes of Shakespeare is that the Magpie belongs to the family of the corvidae; he always associates it with other members of this family to create an atmosphere of clamour (discord appears twice) and ill-omen (augures + luckless time).

The night-crow cried, aboding luckless time;

Dogs howl'd, and hideous tempests shook down trees;

The raven rook'd her on the chimney's top,

And chatt'ring pies in dismal discords sung;

(3H6 5 6 45-48, emphasis added)

Augures, and understood relations, have

By magot-pies, and choughs, and rooks, brought forth

(MAC 3 4 123-4, emphasis added)

The crow, the sland'rous cuckoo, nor

The boding raven, nor chough hoar,

Nor chatt'ring pie,

May on our bridehouse perch or sing,

Or with them any discord bring,

(TNK 1 1 19-23, emphasis added)