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Women & Birds

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MWB | 08:30 Tue 22nd May 2007 | Phrases & Sayings
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Where & how did women get to be called "birds?"

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In Chaucer the word byrd meant a woman and the word fowle a bird.
Women were birds before our feathered friends.
'Bird' - sometimes spelt 'brid' - meant the young of our feathered friends as long ago as 800 AD in Anglo-Saxon texts, so you might find something such as 'a hen and her birds'.
It was not until the year 1300 - Chaucer was not born until 1342 - that 'burd(e)' meaning a maiden is first recorded. That was associated with 'bryd', from which we get 'bride'. So, the connection between birds and girls/women is truly ancient but the flying ones definitely appeared first.
Is it because they catch worms?? ;-)
Is it summat to do with tits? :o)

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