The Bad Little Owls


John Breck

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Tonight, we’ll read the opening to “The Bad Little Owls” from the “Told at Twilight” series by John Breck. It was published in 1923. This episode first aired in May of 2021.

A group of owls is called a parliament. This term supposedly originates from C.S. Lewis’ description of a meeting of owls in “The Chronicles of Narnia.”

Many of the avian collective nouns originate in an anonymously published book from 1486 titled “ The Book of Hawking, Hunting, and Blasing of Arms”, later discovered to be written by a nun named Juliana Barnes. Some of the many terms from this book still in use today are an “exaltation of larks”, a “murmuration of starlings”, a “watch of nightingales”, a “sedge of herons”, and an “unkindness of ravens”.