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Gagila grece quaquilla avis graculus qualia quam quidam coturnicem dicunt.


Gagila AC f | Gagilla B e

quaquilla (- quilla B) BC | quaquilla A | quaquila (- quila e) e f

dicunt (-cũt e) C ef | dñt A | uocant B


Gagila is Greek for the bird called quaquilla in Latin or qualia {"quail"} which some also call coturnix.


The Greek form of the word γαγίλα /gagíla/ is only attested once in the TLG, in Aelius Herodianus' partitiones: κολοιός, ἡ γαγίλα (p. 70, Boissonade) [[1]], where it is mentioned as a synonym for κολοιός /koloiós/, jackdaw. It is listed in Kriaras, along with a vernacular form γάιλα /gáila/, as a synonym for καρακάξα /karakáxa/, magpie.

E.A. Sophocles mentions γαγύλα /gagýla/ and γαγίλα /gagíla/ as "jackdaw?", obviously being unsure about its zoological identification. He quotes Petrus of Antioch (A.D. 1053) and Nicetas of Chonae (A.D. 1216) as his sources.

Even if a jackdaw is a very different bird from a quail, since the name appears to be of onomatopoeic origin it could well have been applied to different birds. However equating Greek gagila with quaquilla is more problematic.

Only graculus and coturnix were used in Antiquity. Simon's quaquilla is a medieval name also of onomatopoeic origin. This fact may explain the enormous number of variants that are found in the literature, cf. Latham: quaila, qualia, qualena "quail (bird)", and quiscula, quisquila "quail (bird)"; Onions under "Quail 1" has medieval Latin coacula, and Du Cange has Qualia, Quaquilia, Ortix, coturnix, with Ortix being Greek ὄρτυξ /órtyx/ id.

See also: Ortix

WilfGunther 13/07/2014

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