Tuesday, March 10, 2009

That's Bombycilla, not bombastic!!

Cedar Waxwing
Originally uploaded by Laura Erickson
"Bombyx" came from Latin or Greek for silky, and "cilla" came from an erroneous understanding of the meaning of "cilla." Vieillot named me thinking he was calling me a "silky tail" but the name actually means "silky mover." Well, I have to admit, my moves ARE pretty smooth!!


Anonymous said...

You think YOU have problems with your scientific name--how'd you like it to be Turdus??!

Anonymous said...

Honey, don't get your underparts in a twist. The word bombastic actually has the same root as bombyx--meaning silky. Bombast comes from Middle English bombast cotton padding, from Middle French bombace, from Medieval Latin bombac-, bombax cotton, alteration of Latin bombyc-, bombyx silkworm, silk, from Greek bombyk-, bombyx

: pretentious inflated speech or writing