Colourful Collective Nouns


I love the colourful collective nouns I discovered recently and feel ashamed they’d passed me by all my life until now. There are so many to choose from but below are a few I want to share with you. Hope you enjoy them: whether collective noun pro or a novice. Enjoy.

Whilst trekking through the jungle (or sailing in a small boat across the ocean) there is the  risk of being assaulted by an ambush of tigers.  Creches around the world entertain the young children by a storytelling of ravens The floral display of flowers will never seem the same again after witnessing a bloom of jellyfish and continuing on the herbaceous theme, those poor Jellyfishplucked game birds; not bad enough being shot, now they risk becoming a bouquet of pheasants. Maybe the sight of them caused the gaze of racoons or resulted in a bellowing of bullfinches. What about those majestic circus performing African mammals, clambering precariously on top of one another until you have a tower of giraffes. After witnessing all their strenuous effort the sleepiest of animals slowly dash for their pillows and duvets and as their eyelids battle with drowsiness there is soon a bed of sloths. Not all animals are so lethargic bullfinchesas the magnificent nocturnal birds of prey swoop to create a parliament of owls. Imagine them holding court over the country, power of the land in their stately talons – and who knows, perhaps much wiser lawmakers than their human counterparts. The most appropriately collective noun must surely be a flamboyance of flamingos as they gather in their thousands (or at times over a million) on the African lakes. One of our busiest rodents are a scurry of squirrels as they dart about the land, collecting nuts and seeds, stopping occasionally for a swift glance around before leaping away, up the tree, over the fence, down the alleyway.  Finally, let the past be safely stowed away within a memory of elephants.

 “in every landscape the point of astonishment is the meeting of the sky and the earth.”

by Ralph Waldo Emerson

16 thoughts on “Colourful Collective Nouns

  1. JoHanna Massey

    This is such a wonderful post. “A storytelling of ravens, and a gaze of racoons resonates with me. Thank you and best wishes.

      1. JoHanna Massey

        I was once told that they listen to the human conversations, watch and listen to the fellow animals and species, observe all that transpires on the planet and hold it in their memory. As a collective they have the entire story, and the wisdom of being aware of all that transpired, and pass it on generation to generation among the ravens.

  2. Barbara

    Annika! Those collective nouns are like paint for your paint brush, the computor is your canvas, and you have turned all those combined words into a beautiful collage. Brilliant!
    I can see how much you enjoy writing my dear. It is so much fun watching the artist in action. Thanks for letting us look over your shoulder while you paint.

    1. I love the image of me painting away Barbara. In real life useless with a paint brush (unless it’s for decorating purposes!) but I thoroughly enjoy writing and it is a lot of fun. Thank you so much.

  3. Peter R

    I suppose if your parliament of owls joined with a parliament of rooks (the opposition?), you could end up with a murmuration of starlings, an unkindness of rooks, and finally a murder of crows (gulp). Fascinating stuff.

  4. Mike

    Very interesting and it’s made me think more about collective nouns too – like a muddle of wombats or a passel of possums ( I had to look these up!). Love the pictures too.

    Keep up the good work


  5. Sammy Perry

    Another great post Annika! This post certainly wasn’t as messy as a clutter of cats. In fact, I’m sure it could have taught a school of dolphins. Hopefully, they won’t get attacked by an army of frogs, but they might want to fight their enemies, a mob of kangaroos! That’s about it from me. Looking forward to your next post!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s