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Any member of the class Aves, which includes warmblooded, feathered vertebrates with forelimbs modified to form wings.
See also: Ornament

What does it mean when you dream about birds?

Birds are complex symbols with many possible meanings. As creatures that fly aloft with no attachment to the ground, they can represent freedom, either physical or psychological. Because they navigate in an unseen—and thus seemingly spiritual—medium, birds can have a variety of different religious meanings, as messengers of the divine (e.g., the Holy Spirit), as symbols of the soul, as heralds of spiritual aspiration (the desire to “soar aloft”), and so on. Blackbirds were traditionally thought of as omens of death, although they can also represent the shadow side of the self. Various other meanings are associated with particular kinds of birds (e.g., vultures). Also, birds in dreams sometimes allude to such metaphors as “bird-brained.”


Birdman of Alcatraz
(Robert Stroud, 1890–1963) from jailbird to famous ornithologist. [Am. Hist.: Worth, 28]
Birds, The
Hitchcock film in which birds turn on the human race and terrorize a town. [Am. Cinema: Halliwell, 51]
Blue Bird of Happiness
symbolizes the goal of the two children in Maeterlinck play. [Belg. Lit.: The Blue Bird in Haydn & Fuller, 94]
Cloud-cuckoo-land (Nephelococcygia)
city in which all power is to be vested in the birds. [Gk. Drama: Aristophanes Birds]
cranes of Ibycus
called on by the dying poet to bear witness against his murderers, they lead to the murderers’ conviction. [Gk. Myth.: NCE, 1307]
talking raven, beloved pet of half-wit Barnaby Rudge. [Br. Lit.: Dickens Barnaby Rudge]
Ithacan seer; ornithologist. [Gk. Myth.: Kravitz, 46]
fabulous Arabian bird; sings a dirge, burns itself to ashes, and rises to a new life. [Gk. Myth.: Brewer Dictionary, 699]
wise old parrot who teaches Dr. Dolittle the languages of birds and animals. [Children’s Lit.: Hugh Lofting Dr. Dolittle]
bird of ill omen visits the despairing poet. [Am. Lit.: Poe The Raven]
Seagull, Jonathan Livingston
ambitious seagull is determined to improve its flying techniques and achieve greater speeds. [Am. Lit.: Richard Bach Jonathan Livingston Seagull]
References in classic literature ?
The small birds were taking their farewell banquets.
Sure enough the bird settled slowly down upon it, covering it with its wings to keep it warm, and I cowered close beside the egg in such a position that one of the bird's feet, which was as large as the trunk of a tree, was just in front of me.
It happened one evening, when he was hot and tired with walking, and had sat down under a tree in a forest to eat his supper, that he saw two gaily-plumaged birds, that were strange to him, sitting at the top of the tree talking to one another about him.
Timmy Tiptoes went on with his work without replying; indeed, the little bird did not expect an answer.
After crossing a rather large prairie, we arrived at the skirts of a little wood that was enlivened by the songs and flight of a large number of birds.
A moment afterwards, a bird came flying towards him, and hovered in the air, so as almost to brush his face with its wings.
The tameness of the birds and lizards is as nothing when compared to the fearless confidence of this insect.
A good deal of higgling about the price of the choicest bird had taken place between Billy Kirby and its owner before Natty and his companions rejoined the sportsmen It had, however, been settled at one shilling * a shot, which was the highest sum ever exacted, the black taking care to protect himself from losses, as much as possible, by the conditions of the sport.
From every part of the eastern counties reports were received concerning the enormous immigration of birds.
I should not object, but I would much rather see those birds at a distance from us
As we shall not see her again, it may be worth mentioning here that all Never birds now build in that shape of nest, with a broad brim on which the youngsters take an airing.
The fairies have their tiffs with the birds, but they usually give a civil answer to a civil question, and he was quite angry when these two ran away the moment they saw him.