from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Any of several Old World birds of the family Upupidae, especially Upupa epops, having distinctively patterned plumage, a fanlike crest, and a slender, downward-curving bill.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. An Old World bird, Upupa epops, known for its distinctive plumage, fanlike crest, and slender bill.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. A European bird of the genus Upupa (Upupa epops), having a beautiful crest, which it can erect or depress at pleasure, and a slender down-curving bill. Called also hoop, whoop. The name is also applied to several other species of the same genus and allied genera.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A tenuirostral non-passerine bird of the family Upupidæ.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. any of several crested Old World birds with a slender downward-curved bill
Of all birds that hatch for themselves the hoopoe is the only one that builds no nest whatever; it gets into the hollow of the trunk of a tree, and lays its eggs there without making any sort of nest.
Commentators generally agree that the hoopoe is the bird intended.
a bird called a "hoopoe," according to the context.
As I arrive, a hoopoe flounces down to the field alongside and, crest outspread, studiously feasts on worms.
Pisthetairos and Euelpides, frustrated with life in wartime Athens, search for Tereus, a king who had been changed into a hoopoe, in the realm of the birds in the sky.
For example, and this is just for openers, you can be dumb as a dodo, crazy as a coot, silly as a goose, a sitting duck, or simply a dupe from de huppe, the hoopoe, an Old World bird, said to be more stupid than most.
The poem is impossible to translate, although I have seen a version with 'amwolf' and 'waswolf' and once, years ago, I found an English equivalent based on a hoopoe rather than a werewolf which then became 'whompoe' and 'whosepoe'.
Above it were the roller and bee-eater and hoopoe, all fabulously Mediterranean with hot aureate colors that were not, even in the late 1960s, permitted in Britain yet, except under license to the kingfisher.
Wadi Al-Hitan is not separately noted but the desert species hoopoe lark Alaemon alaudipes, probably occurs.
It depicts a stream in a rocky environment with several partridges and a hoopoe (a small-medium bird with a distinctive crest).