Cockcrow – Friday’s Word of the Day


Friday’s Word of the Day was Cockcrow. I know I am a bit behind, but I have had some technical difficulties of late (it’s a long story, but suffice to say the “apple” went dark yesterday). So back to the word cockcrow. It originated between 1350 and 1400 in Middle English and means “the time at which a cock characteristically crows; daybreak; dawn”.

Characteristically the definition says, but I happen to live nearby a very confused cock who crows at all times of the day. Poor fellow does not seem to know his sun from a street lamp or a full moon. By the time the sun actually does rise in the sky his lusty crow is reduces to a series of raspy, scratchy cackles. I feel sorry for the old bird. Be it dementia or just plain lunacy, I often wish he could find rest, while allowing the rest of us to do the same!

But I digress. What more is there to know about this fine word. Bible readers will be familiar with the story of Peter’s three denials by the cock’s crow, but did you know that there is a debate as to whether said cock truly existed at all, and if it did, some say it was most certainly not roosting just outside the temple to make its point but a symbolic reference to dawn. And then there are some scholars who believe cock crowing did not happen at all based on a close reference between the Hebrew words Gaver (which means rooster or cock) and Gawra (which means man) and their appearance in the ancient text. This theory goes on to explain that in 1st century Israel, there actually was a man who was charged with shouting, like a rooster, “All the priests prepare to sacrifice!”, “All the Levites to their stations!” and “All Israelites come to worship!” from the rooftop of the temple at dawn.

A continued search on google also reveals that there is The Great Cockcrow Railway near Chertsey, Surrey, UK. It is a 7-1/4 track that was built on the grounds of “Greywood: on the Burwood Park estate on Walton on Thames in 1946 by then resident, John Samual. Subsequent generations expanded on the layout and now offer excursions to visitors on Sundays May through October.

Cockcrow is also the name of a “medium bodied black beer that leads with an aroma of deep roastiness, dark chocolate and bright coffee.  Also with hints of roasted nuts and dark fruit” this American Stout is produced by Gunwhale Ales. The name, it seems, encourages some stout enthusiasts to have beer for breakfast!

At any rate, cockcrow is a fairly straightforward word. Simply, it means what it seems to mean. Here’s a haiku…Have a great weekend!

there is no sleeping
when a confused cock’s cockcrow
shrieks at 3 am


6 responses to “Cockcrow – Friday’s Word of the Day

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