Home >> New International Encyclopedia, Volume 14 >> New Years Day to Nordau >> Nightingale as

Nightingale as

pairing, western, low and species

NIGHTINGALE (AS. nihfcqtclr, 011G. naht agala, Nochtiyan, from AS. niht. night !mina, to sing). A justly celebrated migratory song-bird of Western and Central Europe. which is a warbler.closely related to the robin redbreast, and as large as a thrush—the 1)a alias /ascinia of modern ornithologists. It is rich lirm‘n in color, the rump and tail reddish, the lower parts grayish white. The sexes are alike. It is plenti ful in some parts of the -south and east of Eng Lind, lint, not extend to the western come ties. and never appears in Ireland. It thickets and hedges, and low damp meadows near streams. It arrives in England about the middle of April, the males ten to fourteen days before the females. It is at this season, and befone pairing has taken place, that bintratehers tent rally procure nightingale. for cage-lwird:, as they then become easily reconciled to confine ment, iibile if taken after pairing, they fret and pine till they die. The nightingale makes its grilerally on the ground. hut sometimes on a low fork of a hush. The nest is loosely con structed of dead leave..., rushes. and -talks of gra-s. with a lining, of fibrous roots. The eggs are four or five in number. of a uniform olive brown. Tlie song of the male ceases to be heard as soon nq inenbal ion is over, and Newton remarks that it is not. :ale for novelists to

represent it its singing before April 15th or utter dune 13th. lu however. it is often throughout the year. especially in roomy aviaries. The nightingale mum Ily begin" its song in the evening and sings with brief intervals throughout the night. The va riety, loudness, and richness of its notes are equally extraordinary: and its long quivering strains are full of plai dit.veness as well as of passionate ecstasy. The nightingale has been a favorite from the most ancient times. and is often mentioned in the poetry of India and Pi•rsia, as Well as of l;reeee and Nome, but the bird referred to by these Ea-tern writers is in most cases a larger species I/btu/las phi/01110a), the or WhiVil is never seen west of the Rhine; or else a third species (Thtiffius of Persia and Turkestan. The bird also has a place in classic mythology in the story of Procne and Philomela. Consult : Newton. Dirtionary of Birds (London and New York, 189:3-961 : Burroughs. Sunshine (Boston, 1876). See Colored Plate of Som:-I:tntis With THRUSH.