from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Any of several plump-bodied Old World game birds, especially of the genera Perdix and Alectoris, related to the pheasants and grouse.
  • n. Any of several birds, such as the ruffed grouse or the bobwhite, similar or related to the partridge.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any bird of a number of genera in the family Phasianidae, notably in the genera Perdix and Alectoris.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Any one of numerous species of small gallinaceous birds of the genus Perdix and several related genera of the family Perdicidæ, of the Old World. The partridge is noted as a game bird.
  • n. Any one of several species of quail-like birds belonging to Colinus, and allied genera.
  • n. The ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus).

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A gallinaceous or rasorial bird of the family Tetraonidæ and of one or another of the subfamilies perdicinæ, Caccabinæ, and Ortyginæ, of small size as compared with grouse (Tetraoninæ), with four toes, scaly shanks seldom spurred, fairly well-developed tail, and naked nostrils
  • n. By a misapplication of the name (by English sportsmen and others in South America), species of the family Tinamidæ, as Nothura maculosa, the common partridge of the pampas of the Argentine Republic, and Rhynchotus rufescens, the great or large partridge.
  • n. In Australia, by misapplication, species of the family Tumicidæ.
  • n. In New England, by misapplication, the ruffed grouse.
  • n. In artillery, a large bombard formerly used in sieges and defensive works. Froissart. Compare perdreau.
  • n. A caunon charge which consists of a number of missiles fired together; a sort of case-shot; a grenade.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. heavy-bodied small-winged South American game bird resembling a gallinaceous bird but related to the ratite birds
  • n. a popular North American game bird; named for its call
  • n. valued as a game bird in eastern United States and Canada
  • n. flesh of either quail or grouse
  • n. small Old World gallinaceous game birds


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English partrich, from Old French perdriz, alteration of perdis, from Latin perdīx, from Greek.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Via Middle English and Old French, from Latin perdīx ("partridge"), from Ancient Greek πέρδιξ (perdix, "partridge").



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  • a pear tree

    January 10, 2010

  • Y vivieron felices y comieron Katrinas. Much better.

    November 16, 2009

  • Sounds like a fine fate

    November 16, 2009

  • One of the standard endings to Spanish fairy tales is "Y vivieron felices y comieron perdices" (they lived happily and ate partridges). See, e.g. perdices

    November 16, 2009

  • Of 'that little coquette Katrina':

    "She was a blooming lass of fresh eighteen; plump as a patridge; ripe and melting and rosy-cheeked as one of her father's peaches"

    -Irving, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

    I'm intrigued by the 'one ass, two chairs' approach to metaphors of objectification here. A patridge--ie. game--AND a neatly domesticated fruit!

    November 16, 2009