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Partridges are by some people called κάκκαβαι, as, for instance, by Alcman, who speaks as follows—
Alcman, too, began the strain;
And he introduced into the language
The compound name of κακκαβίδες:
showing plainly enough that he had learnt to compound the word from the noise made by partridges. On which account also Chamæleon of Pontus said that the discovery of music was originally made by the ancients from the birds singing in desert places; by imitation of whom they arrived at the art of music; but it is not all partridges who make the noise called κακκαβίζειν, or cackling. At all events, Theophrastus, in his treatise on the Different Noises made by Animals of the same Species, says—“The partridges in Attica, near Corydallus, on the side towards the city, cackle; but those on the other side twitter.” And Basilis, in the second book of his History of India, says—“The diminutive men in those countries which fight with cranes are often carried by partridges.” And Menecles, in the first book of his Collectanea, says—“The pygmies fight both with partridges and with cranes.” But there is a different kind of partridge found in Italy, of a dark colour on its wings, and smaller in size, with a beak inclining in the smallest possible degree to a red colour. But the partridges about Cirrha are not at all nice to eat as to their flesh, on account of the nature of their food. But the partridges in Bœotia either do not cross into Attica at all, or else, whenever they do, they are easily recognised by their voices, as we have previously mentioned. But the partridges which are found in Paphlagonia, Theophrastus says, have two hearts. But those in the island of Sciathos feed on cockles. And sometimes they have as many as fifteen or sixteen young at a time; and they can only fly short distances, as Xenophon tells us in the first book of his Anabasis, where he writes,— “But if any one rouses the bustard suddenly it is easy to catch him; for they can only fly a short distance, like partridges, and they very soon tire; but their flesh is very delicious.”

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