Decadent Peacocks

Peacock garden 2Christina here. As some of you will have seen from our last newsletter, Wench Nicola and I recently visited Newark Park, a lovely Tudor hunting lodge in the wilds of Gloucestershire. It had a beautiful, sprawling garden, and apart from the amazing views, one of the best things about it were the resident peacocks. Those majestic birds always look like they own a place, strutting around and uttering their mournful cries every so often. It occurred to me that when describing a historical setting in a book, adding peacocks to the background immediately conveys a sense of luxury and decadence. They are not really useful birds (although perhaps they can be – more about that in a moment), just decorative and therefore an indulgence. If an author wants to demonstrate the fact that the hero/heroine is very rich, dotting their lawns with peacocks would be a good way to go about it. And who wouldn’t want some? They are truly stunning.

I’ve never been able to resist peacock feathers, with their gorgeous iridescent blue and green colours. And the bird they come from is equally fascinating. I didn’t know much about peacocks, so I looked them up and went down a bit of a research rabbit hole … The term ‘peacock’ when applied to all of them is actually wrong, as that is only the male of the species – we should really be calling them ‘peafowl’. The females are ‘peahens’ and unfortunately for them they are much less impressive, being smaller and mostly white and brown. (Although obviously that’s good from a camouflage point of view when they are raising peachicks/baby peafowl). There are three types, but the one we usually mean is the Indian Peafowl, which is most common. In fact, it is the national bird of India, and they are native to India and Sri Lanka.

Peacock tailIf you’ve ever seen a male peacock spreading out his incredible tail feathers and shake them at you, you’ll know how impressive they can be. The rustling, almost whirring, noise is unique. And although it’s mostly for visual effect, apparently it also creates some sort of vibration or sound in the air that can’t be felt or heard by humans, only the females they are trying to attract. The courtship ritual isn’t aimed at us humans of course, but I think one of the males we met at Newark Park did it to scare us off so perhaps it’s also a warning signal? We were clearly trespassing on his territory.

It takes three years to grow that impressive tail, and luckily for us if we want one of those beautiful feathers, they all fall off after the mating season. The plumage grows out again for the following year.

Peacock mask 2The first time I saw a peacock feather in a shop and wanted to buy it, I remember being told that it was considered unlucky for some reason. But why? It turns out that they are only unlucky if you’re superstitious and a Westerner. Here, having peacock feathers in the house was thought to bring bad luck and to mean that any unmarried women living there would remain spinsters for the rest of their lives. I also read that it’s supposed to be bad to use peacock feathers in a theatre as part of a prop for a play or in a costume. That would give rise to any number of accidents. Sounds a bit strange to me!

Where did these ideas come from? One theory is that they originated in the Mediterranean where some people believed in a female demon or she-devil called Lilith who had the “evil eye”. Clearly, the pattern on a peacock’s tail feathers reminded them of that, so having them in the house was the same as bringing the devil in to harm your family. Another suggestion is that it came from Europeans being scared of Mongol warriors, who were said to wear peacock feathers when they went into battle.

Peacock strut 2It could simply be the fact that “being a peacock” means being vain and a bit arrogant, someone who wants to draw attention to themselves, which is not a nice trait. I guess we’ll never know, but the overall superstition against them remained. It’s a bit like being scared of Friday the 13th – most people don’t remember why that particular date is feared, it just stuck. (I’ve read that it has to do with the fact that the Knights Templar order was dissolved on Friday the 13th October 1307, when most of them were rounded up and jailed – the date made a horrible impression.)

In the Far East, beliefs about peacock feathers are the complete opposite – there they are considered good luck, possibly even sacred. For Indian people, these birds symbolise all the best traits such as patience and compassion, sometimes associated with the goddess of good fortune, Lakshmi. To a Buddhist they reflect purity and for them, nirvana is also symbolised by white peacocks. (These are not albinos, but exist as a result of special breeding and a genetic mutation called leucism which makes the feathers lose their pigment.) Rather than being scared of the ‘eyes’ on a peacock’s tail, people in India, China and Japan see them as extra sets of eyes that can keep them safe. I think I like that version much better!

Peacock pattern 2Some interesting facts about peacocks:-

  • Peacocks were probably first introduced to the UK by the Romans who, according to what I’ve read, ate them! (Although by all accounts they don’t taste very good and the meat is tough).
  • Greeks did too and when the bird had been cooked, the feathers were glued back on it with some kind of honey mixture before serving so they would look good.
  • They may have disappeared from the UK after the end of the Roman period and were later reintroduced by Sir John de Foxley in the 14th century.
  • Peafowl eat all sorts of things, including plants, insects and small mammals.
  • They are often used in art – who wouldn’t want that stunning pattern as decoration?
  • Peacocks can kill snakes using their sharp claws or grabbing the snake behind the head so they can’t bite – then they eat them! So they can be useful after all.
  • Because they are able to do this, some people believed that drinking their blood would be a snake venom antidote.
  • A peacock in the wild lives for about 20-25 years, but in captivity that can increase to up to 50!
  • Harmony and peace of mind are associated with peacocks.
  • There are those who believe that peacocks can forecast rain and if they cry more than usual, they are said to be predicting the death of someone in the owner’s family – I’m guessing that superstition has more to do with the eerie noise they make.
  • Peafowl can fly, even the males with those enormous tail feathers – they can’t go very far though.
  • They like to stay in a group and I found differing opinions as to what the collective noun for them is – a bevy, a party, an ostentation, a pride or a muster?
  • Peacock feathers are extra sparkly because they have some sort of minute crystal-like things that reflect the light, making them seem fluorescent.

Peacock feather 2That’s probably more than you ever wanted to know about these gorgeous birds! I will definitely consider having some in my next novel, although as I’m writing about the Romans, I’ll have to make sure they don’t end up on the table!

Have you read any stories that feature stunning gardens with peacocks strutting around the lawns? Or books with the word peacock in the title? The only one I can think of is Victoria Holt’s The Pride of the Peacock which, if memory serves, had more to do with opals than birds.

136 thoughts on “Decadent Peacocks”

  1. I had a friend who lived in the country. She and her husband had a couple of peacocks. She told me that besides being beautiful they were a very effective alarm system. Apparently they put up quite a racket whenever anyone came into the yard.

    Reply
  2. I had a friend who lived in the country. She and her husband had a couple of peacocks. She told me that besides being beautiful they were a very effective alarm system. Apparently they put up quite a racket whenever anyone came into the yard.

    Reply
  3. I had a friend who lived in the country. She and her husband had a couple of peacocks. She told me that besides being beautiful they were a very effective alarm system. Apparently they put up quite a racket whenever anyone came into the yard.

    Reply
  4. I had a friend who lived in the country. She and her husband had a couple of peacocks. She told me that besides being beautiful they were a very effective alarm system. Apparently they put up quite a racket whenever anyone came into the yard.

    Reply
  5. I had a friend who lived in the country. She and her husband had a couple of peacocks. She told me that besides being beautiful they were a very effective alarm system. Apparently they put up quite a racket whenever anyone came into the yard.

    Reply
  6. That sounds great, Mary, and very useful! I’ve heard of geese being good at guarding property but hadn’t thought about the peacocks doing the same. Excellent!

    Reply
  7. That sounds great, Mary, and very useful! I’ve heard of geese being good at guarding property but hadn’t thought about the peacocks doing the same. Excellent!

    Reply
  8. That sounds great, Mary, and very useful! I’ve heard of geese being good at guarding property but hadn’t thought about the peacocks doing the same. Excellent!

    Reply
  9. That sounds great, Mary, and very useful! I’ve heard of geese being good at guarding property but hadn’t thought about the peacocks doing the same. Excellent!

    Reply
  10. That sounds great, Mary, and very useful! I’ve heard of geese being good at guarding property but hadn’t thought about the peacocks doing the same. Excellent!

    Reply
  11. What fun, Christina! I’ve had peafowl in several books and had done some research, but I didn’t go anywhere near as deep into the rabbit hole as you did! Love the idea of calling a group a “pride of peacocks” because of the alliteration.

    Reply
  12. What fun, Christina! I’ve had peafowl in several books and had done some research, but I didn’t go anywhere near as deep into the rabbit hole as you did! Love the idea of calling a group a “pride of peacocks” because of the alliteration.

    Reply
  13. What fun, Christina! I’ve had peafowl in several books and had done some research, but I didn’t go anywhere near as deep into the rabbit hole as you did! Love the idea of calling a group a “pride of peacocks” because of the alliteration.

    Reply
  14. What fun, Christina! I’ve had peafowl in several books and had done some research, but I didn’t go anywhere near as deep into the rabbit hole as you did! Love the idea of calling a group a “pride of peacocks” because of the alliteration.

    Reply
  15. What fun, Christina! I’ve had peafowl in several books and had done some research, but I didn’t go anywhere near as deep into the rabbit hole as you did! Love the idea of calling a group a “pride of peacocks” because of the alliteration.

    Reply
  16. The Peacocks Fitzy and Floyd in Eloisa James’s series “The Wildes of Lindow Castle” add humor and drama to her romances. The peacocks are territorial and fight each other, causing buckets of dirt to be dug up in the lawn. Also, they provide humorous moments as well, such as a hero being surprised and challenged by a peacock as they are hurrying to a folly for a little alone time. Most of the time peacocks are just window dressing in the stories I’ve read. It was fun to read a Georgian series where the peacocks were part of the family.

    Reply
  17. The Peacocks Fitzy and Floyd in Eloisa James’s series “The Wildes of Lindow Castle” add humor and drama to her romances. The peacocks are territorial and fight each other, causing buckets of dirt to be dug up in the lawn. Also, they provide humorous moments as well, such as a hero being surprised and challenged by a peacock as they are hurrying to a folly for a little alone time. Most of the time peacocks are just window dressing in the stories I’ve read. It was fun to read a Georgian series where the peacocks were part of the family.

    Reply
  18. The Peacocks Fitzy and Floyd in Eloisa James’s series “The Wildes of Lindow Castle” add humor and drama to her romances. The peacocks are territorial and fight each other, causing buckets of dirt to be dug up in the lawn. Also, they provide humorous moments as well, such as a hero being surprised and challenged by a peacock as they are hurrying to a folly for a little alone time. Most of the time peacocks are just window dressing in the stories I’ve read. It was fun to read a Georgian series where the peacocks were part of the family.

    Reply
  19. The Peacocks Fitzy and Floyd in Eloisa James’s series “The Wildes of Lindow Castle” add humor and drama to her romances. The peacocks are territorial and fight each other, causing buckets of dirt to be dug up in the lawn. Also, they provide humorous moments as well, such as a hero being surprised and challenged by a peacock as they are hurrying to a folly for a little alone time. Most of the time peacocks are just window dressing in the stories I’ve read. It was fun to read a Georgian series where the peacocks were part of the family.

    Reply
  20. The Peacocks Fitzy and Floyd in Eloisa James’s series “The Wildes of Lindow Castle” add humor and drama to her romances. The peacocks are territorial and fight each other, causing buckets of dirt to be dug up in the lawn. Also, they provide humorous moments as well, such as a hero being surprised and challenged by a peacock as they are hurrying to a folly for a little alone time. Most of the time peacocks are just window dressing in the stories I’ve read. It was fun to read a Georgian series where the peacocks were part of the family.

    Reply
  21. What a fascinating and educational post, Christina. Thank you!
    I’ll admit to liking the collective term an Ostentation of Peacocks; I see there is a children’s book with that name. Regarding titles, Rumer Godden wrote a book entitled The Peacock Spring.

    Reply
  22. What a fascinating and educational post, Christina. Thank you!
    I’ll admit to liking the collective term an Ostentation of Peacocks; I see there is a children’s book with that name. Regarding titles, Rumer Godden wrote a book entitled The Peacock Spring.

    Reply
  23. What a fascinating and educational post, Christina. Thank you!
    I’ll admit to liking the collective term an Ostentation of Peacocks; I see there is a children’s book with that name. Regarding titles, Rumer Godden wrote a book entitled The Peacock Spring.

    Reply
  24. What a fascinating and educational post, Christina. Thank you!
    I’ll admit to liking the collective term an Ostentation of Peacocks; I see there is a children’s book with that name. Regarding titles, Rumer Godden wrote a book entitled The Peacock Spring.

    Reply
  25. What a fascinating and educational post, Christina. Thank you!
    I’ll admit to liking the collective term an Ostentation of Peacocks; I see there is a children’s book with that name. Regarding titles, Rumer Godden wrote a book entitled The Peacock Spring.

    Reply
  26. Kareni – The Peacock Spring was the first Rumer Godden I read and it made me a fan (not of feathers!), but I think I love the phrase Ostentation of Peacocks even more — definitely will search for the book!

    Reply
  27. Kareni – The Peacock Spring was the first Rumer Godden I read and it made me a fan (not of feathers!), but I think I love the phrase Ostentation of Peacocks even more — definitely will search for the book!

    Reply
  28. Kareni – The Peacock Spring was the first Rumer Godden I read and it made me a fan (not of feathers!), but I think I love the phrase Ostentation of Peacocks even more — definitely will search for the book!

    Reply
  29. Kareni – The Peacock Spring was the first Rumer Godden I read and it made me a fan (not of feathers!), but I think I love the phrase Ostentation of Peacocks even more — definitely will search for the book!

    Reply
  30. Kareni – The Peacock Spring was the first Rumer Godden I read and it made me a fan (not of feathers!), but I think I love the phrase Ostentation of Peacocks even more — definitely will search for the book!

    Reply
  31. Terrific post, Christina — you deserve a peacock feather or several! Like Pamela, I’m fond of the peacocks appearing in Eloisa James’s Wilde family series – and have always wondered if she based them on china peacocks made by Fitz & Floyd. F&F made lots of tureens in animal shapes, mostly birds. While it’s not about peacocks themselves, but rather about their appearances in the beautiful work of Wm Morris and M Fortuny, A.S. Byatt’s Peacock & Vine is a long time favorite- the kind of book one can dip into at any spot and enjoy.

    Reply
  32. Terrific post, Christina — you deserve a peacock feather or several! Like Pamela, I’m fond of the peacocks appearing in Eloisa James’s Wilde family series – and have always wondered if she based them on china peacocks made by Fitz & Floyd. F&F made lots of tureens in animal shapes, mostly birds. While it’s not about peacocks themselves, but rather about their appearances in the beautiful work of Wm Morris and M Fortuny, A.S. Byatt’s Peacock & Vine is a long time favorite- the kind of book one can dip into at any spot and enjoy.

    Reply
  33. Terrific post, Christina — you deserve a peacock feather or several! Like Pamela, I’m fond of the peacocks appearing in Eloisa James’s Wilde family series – and have always wondered if she based them on china peacocks made by Fitz & Floyd. F&F made lots of tureens in animal shapes, mostly birds. While it’s not about peacocks themselves, but rather about their appearances in the beautiful work of Wm Morris and M Fortuny, A.S. Byatt’s Peacock & Vine is a long time favorite- the kind of book one can dip into at any spot and enjoy.

    Reply
  34. Terrific post, Christina — you deserve a peacock feather or several! Like Pamela, I’m fond of the peacocks appearing in Eloisa James’s Wilde family series – and have always wondered if she based them on china peacocks made by Fitz & Floyd. F&F made lots of tureens in animal shapes, mostly birds. While it’s not about peacocks themselves, but rather about their appearances in the beautiful work of Wm Morris and M Fortuny, A.S. Byatt’s Peacock & Vine is a long time favorite- the kind of book one can dip into at any spot and enjoy.

    Reply
  35. Terrific post, Christina — you deserve a peacock feather or several! Like Pamela, I’m fond of the peacocks appearing in Eloisa James’s Wilde family series – and have always wondered if she based them on china peacocks made by Fitz & Floyd. F&F made lots of tureens in animal shapes, mostly birds. While it’s not about peacocks themselves, but rather about their appearances in the beautiful work of Wm Morris and M Fortuny, A.S. Byatt’s Peacock & Vine is a long time favorite- the kind of book one can dip into at any spot and enjoy.

    Reply
  36. Thank you so much, Constance! I really must check out the Eloisa James books, they sound fab. And I looked up the Fitz & Floyd figurines – wonderful! I’ve only ever read one A.S. Byatt book (Possession) but might try Peacock & Vine as well. Thank you for the recommendation!

    Reply
  37. Thank you so much, Constance! I really must check out the Eloisa James books, they sound fab. And I looked up the Fitz & Floyd figurines – wonderful! I’ve only ever read one A.S. Byatt book (Possession) but might try Peacock & Vine as well. Thank you for the recommendation!

    Reply
  38. Thank you so much, Constance! I really must check out the Eloisa James books, they sound fab. And I looked up the Fitz & Floyd figurines – wonderful! I’ve only ever read one A.S. Byatt book (Possession) but might try Peacock & Vine as well. Thank you for the recommendation!

    Reply
  39. Thank you so much, Constance! I really must check out the Eloisa James books, they sound fab. And I looked up the Fitz & Floyd figurines – wonderful! I’ve only ever read one A.S. Byatt book (Possession) but might try Peacock & Vine as well. Thank you for the recommendation!

    Reply
  40. Thank you so much, Constance! I really must check out the Eloisa James books, they sound fab. And I looked up the Fitz & Floyd figurines – wonderful! I’ve only ever read one A.S. Byatt book (Possession) but might try Peacock & Vine as well. Thank you for the recommendation!

    Reply
  41. Christina – In 1986, a millionaire named David Murdoch built the Harbor Court Hotel in Baltimore (Maryland’s) Inner Harbor. The Harbor Court Hotel was not huge, but quite luxurious. It had one of the most expensive restaurants in the state. It also had a grand curving staircase, which immediately made the hotel a place for destination weddings. But what made the hotel really unique, IMHO, was the outdoor, restricted courtyard which was (allegedly) home to two peafowl. I visited the hotel several times for dinner, Teddy Bear tea, but never ever got a glimpse of the gorgeous birds. The hotel is now the Royal Sonesta Harbor Court Hotel. And as far as I know, the peafowl did not survive the hotel’s name change, more’s the pity.

    Reply
  42. Christina – In 1986, a millionaire named David Murdoch built the Harbor Court Hotel in Baltimore (Maryland’s) Inner Harbor. The Harbor Court Hotel was not huge, but quite luxurious. It had one of the most expensive restaurants in the state. It also had a grand curving staircase, which immediately made the hotel a place for destination weddings. But what made the hotel really unique, IMHO, was the outdoor, restricted courtyard which was (allegedly) home to two peafowl. I visited the hotel several times for dinner, Teddy Bear tea, but never ever got a glimpse of the gorgeous birds. The hotel is now the Royal Sonesta Harbor Court Hotel. And as far as I know, the peafowl did not survive the hotel’s name change, more’s the pity.

    Reply
  43. Christina – In 1986, a millionaire named David Murdoch built the Harbor Court Hotel in Baltimore (Maryland’s) Inner Harbor. The Harbor Court Hotel was not huge, but quite luxurious. It had one of the most expensive restaurants in the state. It also had a grand curving staircase, which immediately made the hotel a place for destination weddings. But what made the hotel really unique, IMHO, was the outdoor, restricted courtyard which was (allegedly) home to two peafowl. I visited the hotel several times for dinner, Teddy Bear tea, but never ever got a glimpse of the gorgeous birds. The hotel is now the Royal Sonesta Harbor Court Hotel. And as far as I know, the peafowl did not survive the hotel’s name change, more’s the pity.

    Reply
  44. Christina – In 1986, a millionaire named David Murdoch built the Harbor Court Hotel in Baltimore (Maryland’s) Inner Harbor. The Harbor Court Hotel was not huge, but quite luxurious. It had one of the most expensive restaurants in the state. It also had a grand curving staircase, which immediately made the hotel a place for destination weddings. But what made the hotel really unique, IMHO, was the outdoor, restricted courtyard which was (allegedly) home to two peafowl. I visited the hotel several times for dinner, Teddy Bear tea, but never ever got a glimpse of the gorgeous birds. The hotel is now the Royal Sonesta Harbor Court Hotel. And as far as I know, the peafowl did not survive the hotel’s name change, more’s the pity.

    Reply
  45. Christina – In 1986, a millionaire named David Murdoch built the Harbor Court Hotel in Baltimore (Maryland’s) Inner Harbor. The Harbor Court Hotel was not huge, but quite luxurious. It had one of the most expensive restaurants in the state. It also had a grand curving staircase, which immediately made the hotel a place for destination weddings. But what made the hotel really unique, IMHO, was the outdoor, restricted courtyard which was (allegedly) home to two peafowl. I visited the hotel several times for dinner, Teddy Bear tea, but never ever got a glimpse of the gorgeous birds. The hotel is now the Royal Sonesta Harbor Court Hotel. And as far as I know, the peafowl did not survive the hotel’s name change, more’s the pity.

    Reply
  46. That sounds very intriguing, Binnie! I wonder what happened to the birds since they apparently live for such a long time. I’m sure they enjoyed having their own private courtyard as long as it wasn’t too small. Wouldn’t it be lovely to have peacocks in the background of wedding photos!

    Reply
  47. That sounds very intriguing, Binnie! I wonder what happened to the birds since they apparently live for such a long time. I’m sure they enjoyed having their own private courtyard as long as it wasn’t too small. Wouldn’t it be lovely to have peacocks in the background of wedding photos!

    Reply
  48. That sounds very intriguing, Binnie! I wonder what happened to the birds since they apparently live for such a long time. I’m sure they enjoyed having their own private courtyard as long as it wasn’t too small. Wouldn’t it be lovely to have peacocks in the background of wedding photos!

    Reply
  49. That sounds very intriguing, Binnie! I wonder what happened to the birds since they apparently live for such a long time. I’m sure they enjoyed having their own private courtyard as long as it wasn’t too small. Wouldn’t it be lovely to have peacocks in the background of wedding photos!

    Reply
  50. That sounds very intriguing, Binnie! I wonder what happened to the birds since they apparently live for such a long time. I’m sure they enjoyed having their own private courtyard as long as it wasn’t too small. Wouldn’t it be lovely to have peacocks in the background of wedding photos!

    Reply
  51. I have read the James’ books which included the peacocks. For some reason, that is the only one I can recall.
    When I was a kid, I was part of a group of 5 girls who rode our bicycles together. We had adventures. We were very cool. Or at least we were cool for 10 year old girls. One of the places we had our adventures was a beautiful cemetery There was a pretty pond, weeping willow trees and peacocks. We would eat lunch and enjoy the scenery and the peacocks would walk around looking quite majestic. I think they considered us beneath their notice. They never threatened us in any way, but they did strut and pose and impressed us very much. They are lovely birds. And I think they are probably too beautiful and impressive to need to fly.

    Reply
  52. I have read the James’ books which included the peacocks. For some reason, that is the only one I can recall.
    When I was a kid, I was part of a group of 5 girls who rode our bicycles together. We had adventures. We were very cool. Or at least we were cool for 10 year old girls. One of the places we had our adventures was a beautiful cemetery There was a pretty pond, weeping willow trees and peacocks. We would eat lunch and enjoy the scenery and the peacocks would walk around looking quite majestic. I think they considered us beneath their notice. They never threatened us in any way, but they did strut and pose and impressed us very much. They are lovely birds. And I think they are probably too beautiful and impressive to need to fly.

    Reply
  53. I have read the James’ books which included the peacocks. For some reason, that is the only one I can recall.
    When I was a kid, I was part of a group of 5 girls who rode our bicycles together. We had adventures. We were very cool. Or at least we were cool for 10 year old girls. One of the places we had our adventures was a beautiful cemetery There was a pretty pond, weeping willow trees and peacocks. We would eat lunch and enjoy the scenery and the peacocks would walk around looking quite majestic. I think they considered us beneath their notice. They never threatened us in any way, but they did strut and pose and impressed us very much. They are lovely birds. And I think they are probably too beautiful and impressive to need to fly.

    Reply
  54. I have read the James’ books which included the peacocks. For some reason, that is the only one I can recall.
    When I was a kid, I was part of a group of 5 girls who rode our bicycles together. We had adventures. We were very cool. Or at least we were cool for 10 year old girls. One of the places we had our adventures was a beautiful cemetery There was a pretty pond, weeping willow trees and peacocks. We would eat lunch and enjoy the scenery and the peacocks would walk around looking quite majestic. I think they considered us beneath their notice. They never threatened us in any way, but they did strut and pose and impressed us very much. They are lovely birds. And I think they are probably too beautiful and impressive to need to fly.

    Reply
  55. I have read the James’ books which included the peacocks. For some reason, that is the only one I can recall.
    When I was a kid, I was part of a group of 5 girls who rode our bicycles together. We had adventures. We were very cool. Or at least we were cool for 10 year old girls. One of the places we had our adventures was a beautiful cemetery There was a pretty pond, weeping willow trees and peacocks. We would eat lunch and enjoy the scenery and the peacocks would walk around looking quite majestic. I think they considered us beneath their notice. They never threatened us in any way, but they did strut and pose and impressed us very much. They are lovely birds. And I think they are probably too beautiful and impressive to need to fly.

    Reply
  56. What fascinating info about peacocks! I actually saw one in St. Augustine, Fla. but have never seen the tail in full glory in real life. I never knew the feathers fall off after mating is over, but that would make sense since it would otherwise be difficult to move around. By the way, I heard the Knights Templar were not only arrested on Fri. the 13th, but burnt at the stake for heresy. That would certainly make for an unlucky day for them. I can’t imagine something so beautiful can be thought of as unlucky!

    Reply
  57. What fascinating info about peacocks! I actually saw one in St. Augustine, Fla. but have never seen the tail in full glory in real life. I never knew the feathers fall off after mating is over, but that would make sense since it would otherwise be difficult to move around. By the way, I heard the Knights Templar were not only arrested on Fri. the 13th, but burnt at the stake for heresy. That would certainly make for an unlucky day for them. I can’t imagine something so beautiful can be thought of as unlucky!

    Reply
  58. What fascinating info about peacocks! I actually saw one in St. Augustine, Fla. but have never seen the tail in full glory in real life. I never knew the feathers fall off after mating is over, but that would make sense since it would otherwise be difficult to move around. By the way, I heard the Knights Templar were not only arrested on Fri. the 13th, but burnt at the stake for heresy. That would certainly make for an unlucky day for them. I can’t imagine something so beautiful can be thought of as unlucky!

    Reply
  59. What fascinating info about peacocks! I actually saw one in St. Augustine, Fla. but have never seen the tail in full glory in real life. I never knew the feathers fall off after mating is over, but that would make sense since it would otherwise be difficult to move around. By the way, I heard the Knights Templar were not only arrested on Fri. the 13th, but burnt at the stake for heresy. That would certainly make for an unlucky day for them. I can’t imagine something so beautiful can be thought of as unlucky!

    Reply
  60. What fascinating info about peacocks! I actually saw one in St. Augustine, Fla. but have never seen the tail in full glory in real life. I never knew the feathers fall off after mating is over, but that would make sense since it would otherwise be difficult to move around. By the way, I heard the Knights Templar were not only arrested on Fri. the 13th, but burnt at the stake for heresy. That would certainly make for an unlucky day for them. I can’t imagine something so beautiful can be thought of as unlucky!

    Reply
  61. OK, I entered my comment, and went to an email from Book Bub about a book by an author I follow. The title A Rogue For Lady Peacock. I hear the
    Twilight theme in the background.

    Reply
  62. OK, I entered my comment, and went to an email from Book Bub about a book by an author I follow. The title A Rogue For Lady Peacock. I hear the
    Twilight theme in the background.

    Reply
  63. OK, I entered my comment, and went to an email from Book Bub about a book by an author I follow. The title A Rogue For Lady Peacock. I hear the
    Twilight theme in the background.

    Reply
  64. OK, I entered my comment, and went to an email from Book Bub about a book by an author I follow. The title A Rogue For Lady Peacock. I hear the
    Twilight theme in the background.

    Reply
  65. OK, I entered my comment, and went to an email from Book Bub about a book by an author I follow. The title A Rogue For Lady Peacock. I hear the
    Twilight theme in the background.

    Reply
  66. Peacocks are meant for a farm or large estate, due to noises they make, messes they create. My NC Aunt had a farm, stable, large home in North Carolina, & she had peacocks. The male is loud & poops wherever. Yet, beautiful bounty when he drops his elegant plumes when he goes into “eclipse.”

    Reply
  67. Yes poor Templars, some of them suffered horribly! And I agree – the peacocks are too beautiful to be unlucky surely.

    Reply
  68. Yes poor Templars, some of them suffered horribly! And I agree – the peacocks are too beautiful to be unlucky surely.

    Reply
  69. Yes poor Templars, some of them suffered horribly! And I agree – the peacocks are too beautiful to be unlucky surely.

    Reply
  70. Yes poor Templars, some of them suffered horribly! And I agree – the peacocks are too beautiful to be unlucky surely.

    Reply
  71. Yes poor Templars, some of them suffered horribly! And I agree – the peacocks are too beautiful to be unlucky surely.

    Reply
  72. Christina, you’ve reminded me of several times with peacocks/peahens while volunteering at the Cincinnati Zoo many years ago; Kid’s gift shop had a picture window behind the register area & one morning a customer said WOW! I turned around & a peacock was seeing his reflection in the window & had his tail up & fully spread; probably to get the other male to leave. That window was full of those beautiful feathers & made for quite a sight!
    Other times, in evenings, people would come in asking what birds were in those trees across the way; Peacocks (or fowls). No, peacocks don’t fly! Actually, they do, I’ve watched them–more like a flying hop from branch level to level but they do. I did recommend being careful about walking underneath them in the evening…
    I remember some book with a medieval feast–peacock being served. Cooked & then the feathers all replaced/rearranged for the effect. But I don’t remember the title or author–just very long ago–maybe 13th or 14th century; and to impress a very high ranking visitor…read it oh so long ago…

    Reply
  73. Christina, you’ve reminded me of several times with peacocks/peahens while volunteering at the Cincinnati Zoo many years ago; Kid’s gift shop had a picture window behind the register area & one morning a customer said WOW! I turned around & a peacock was seeing his reflection in the window & had his tail up & fully spread; probably to get the other male to leave. That window was full of those beautiful feathers & made for quite a sight!
    Other times, in evenings, people would come in asking what birds were in those trees across the way; Peacocks (or fowls). No, peacocks don’t fly! Actually, they do, I’ve watched them–more like a flying hop from branch level to level but they do. I did recommend being careful about walking underneath them in the evening…
    I remember some book with a medieval feast–peacock being served. Cooked & then the feathers all replaced/rearranged for the effect. But I don’t remember the title or author–just very long ago–maybe 13th or 14th century; and to impress a very high ranking visitor…read it oh so long ago…

    Reply
  74. Christina, you’ve reminded me of several times with peacocks/peahens while volunteering at the Cincinnati Zoo many years ago; Kid’s gift shop had a picture window behind the register area & one morning a customer said WOW! I turned around & a peacock was seeing his reflection in the window & had his tail up & fully spread; probably to get the other male to leave. That window was full of those beautiful feathers & made for quite a sight!
    Other times, in evenings, people would come in asking what birds were in those trees across the way; Peacocks (or fowls). No, peacocks don’t fly! Actually, they do, I’ve watched them–more like a flying hop from branch level to level but they do. I did recommend being careful about walking underneath them in the evening…
    I remember some book with a medieval feast–peacock being served. Cooked & then the feathers all replaced/rearranged for the effect. But I don’t remember the title or author–just very long ago–maybe 13th or 14th century; and to impress a very high ranking visitor…read it oh so long ago…

    Reply
  75. Christina, you’ve reminded me of several times with peacocks/peahens while volunteering at the Cincinnati Zoo many years ago; Kid’s gift shop had a picture window behind the register area & one morning a customer said WOW! I turned around & a peacock was seeing his reflection in the window & had his tail up & fully spread; probably to get the other male to leave. That window was full of those beautiful feathers & made for quite a sight!
    Other times, in evenings, people would come in asking what birds were in those trees across the way; Peacocks (or fowls). No, peacocks don’t fly! Actually, they do, I’ve watched them–more like a flying hop from branch level to level but they do. I did recommend being careful about walking underneath them in the evening…
    I remember some book with a medieval feast–peacock being served. Cooked & then the feathers all replaced/rearranged for the effect. But I don’t remember the title or author–just very long ago–maybe 13th or 14th century; and to impress a very high ranking visitor…read it oh so long ago…

    Reply
  76. Christina, you’ve reminded me of several times with peacocks/peahens while volunteering at the Cincinnati Zoo many years ago; Kid’s gift shop had a picture window behind the register area & one morning a customer said WOW! I turned around & a peacock was seeing his reflection in the window & had his tail up & fully spread; probably to get the other male to leave. That window was full of those beautiful feathers & made for quite a sight!
    Other times, in evenings, people would come in asking what birds were in those trees across the way; Peacocks (or fowls). No, peacocks don’t fly! Actually, they do, I’ve watched them–more like a flying hop from branch level to level but they do. I did recommend being careful about walking underneath them in the evening…
    I remember some book with a medieval feast–peacock being served. Cooked & then the feathers all replaced/rearranged for the effect. But I don’t remember the title or author–just very long ago–maybe 13th or 14th century; and to impress a very high ranking visitor…read it oh so long ago…

    Reply
  77. What a fascinating post! As for books with peacock in the title there is The Vows of the Peacock by Alice Walworth Graham. It is set during the reign of Edward II, when English royalty also ate peacock, presented re-dressed in it’s plumage. Apparently any vow taken when this dish was presented was (supposed) unbreakable.

    Reply
  78. What a fascinating post! As for books with peacock in the title there is The Vows of the Peacock by Alice Walworth Graham. It is set during the reign of Edward II, when English royalty also ate peacock, presented re-dressed in it’s plumage. Apparently any vow taken when this dish was presented was (supposed) unbreakable.

    Reply
  79. What a fascinating post! As for books with peacock in the title there is The Vows of the Peacock by Alice Walworth Graham. It is set during the reign of Edward II, when English royalty also ate peacock, presented re-dressed in it’s plumage. Apparently any vow taken when this dish was presented was (supposed) unbreakable.

    Reply
  80. What a fascinating post! As for books with peacock in the title there is The Vows of the Peacock by Alice Walworth Graham. It is set during the reign of Edward II, when English royalty also ate peacock, presented re-dressed in it’s plumage. Apparently any vow taken when this dish was presented was (supposed) unbreakable.

    Reply
  81. What a fascinating post! As for books with peacock in the title there is The Vows of the Peacock by Alice Walworth Graham. It is set during the reign of Edward II, when English royalty also ate peacock, presented re-dressed in it’s plumage. Apparently any vow taken when this dish was presented was (supposed) unbreakable.

    Reply
  82. Working in the zoo sounds like fun Karen! And yes I imagine any flying they do with those long tails would be a little clumsy! Not sure I would have wanted to eat a bird ‘redressed’ like that.

    Reply
  83. Working in the zoo sounds like fun Karen! And yes I imagine any flying they do with those long tails would be a little clumsy! Not sure I would have wanted to eat a bird ‘redressed’ like that.

    Reply
  84. Working in the zoo sounds like fun Karen! And yes I imagine any flying they do with those long tails would be a little clumsy! Not sure I would have wanted to eat a bird ‘redressed’ like that.

    Reply
  85. Working in the zoo sounds like fun Karen! And yes I imagine any flying they do with those long tails would be a little clumsy! Not sure I would have wanted to eat a bird ‘redressed’ like that.

    Reply
  86. Working in the zoo sounds like fun Karen! And yes I imagine any flying they do with those long tails would be a little clumsy! Not sure I would have wanted to eat a bird ‘redressed’ like that.

    Reply
  87. Oh fascinating Jane! I’d never heard of that. Would definitely make a great plot point in a story. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  88. Oh fascinating Jane! I’d never heard of that. Would definitely make a great plot point in a story. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  89. Oh fascinating Jane! I’d never heard of that. Would definitely make a great plot point in a story. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  90. Oh fascinating Jane! I’d never heard of that. Would definitely make a great plot point in a story. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  91. Oh fascinating Jane! I’d never heard of that. Would definitely make a great plot point in a story. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  92. Some friends of mine lived on a farm in Virginia, where the owner had quite a flock of peacocks running around loose. When you came down the driveway their screams were uncanny, you thought you had run somebody over with the car. And they roosted in a tree right outside my friends’ house. If you made a loud noise, like banging a pot in the kitchen, they would set up an awful racket.
    I think the main benefit the owner got was being able to sell the tail feathers when the birds shed them.

    Reply
  93. Some friends of mine lived on a farm in Virginia, where the owner had quite a flock of peacocks running around loose. When you came down the driveway their screams were uncanny, you thought you had run somebody over with the car. And they roosted in a tree right outside my friends’ house. If you made a loud noise, like banging a pot in the kitchen, they would set up an awful racket.
    I think the main benefit the owner got was being able to sell the tail feathers when the birds shed them.

    Reply
  94. Some friends of mine lived on a farm in Virginia, where the owner had quite a flock of peacocks running around loose. When you came down the driveway their screams were uncanny, you thought you had run somebody over with the car. And they roosted in a tree right outside my friends’ house. If you made a loud noise, like banging a pot in the kitchen, they would set up an awful racket.
    I think the main benefit the owner got was being able to sell the tail feathers when the birds shed them.

    Reply
  95. Some friends of mine lived on a farm in Virginia, where the owner had quite a flock of peacocks running around loose. When you came down the driveway their screams were uncanny, you thought you had run somebody over with the car. And they roosted in a tree right outside my friends’ house. If you made a loud noise, like banging a pot in the kitchen, they would set up an awful racket.
    I think the main benefit the owner got was being able to sell the tail feathers when the birds shed them.

    Reply
  96. Some friends of mine lived on a farm in Virginia, where the owner had quite a flock of peacocks running around loose. When you came down the driveway their screams were uncanny, you thought you had run somebody over with the car. And they roosted in a tree right outside my friends’ house. If you made a loud noise, like banging a pot in the kitchen, they would set up an awful racket.
    I think the main benefit the owner got was being able to sell the tail feathers when the birds shed them.

    Reply
  97. How interesting! Not sure I would want to have a whole flock of them, Karin, maybe just a couple. They do make quite a lot of noise so I imagine a group of them would be a bit much!

    Reply
  98. How interesting! Not sure I would want to have a whole flock of them, Karin, maybe just a couple. They do make quite a lot of noise so I imagine a group of them would be a bit much!

    Reply
  99. How interesting! Not sure I would want to have a whole flock of them, Karin, maybe just a couple. They do make quite a lot of noise so I imagine a group of them would be a bit much!

    Reply
  100. How interesting! Not sure I would want to have a whole flock of them, Karin, maybe just a couple. They do make quite a lot of noise so I imagine a group of them would be a bit much!

    Reply
  101. How interesting! Not sure I would want to have a whole flock of them, Karin, maybe just a couple. They do make quite a lot of noise so I imagine a group of them would be a bit much!

    Reply

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