See under magpie (def 1).
either of two corvine birds, Pica pica (black-billed magpie) of Eurasia and North America, or P. nuttalli (yellow-billed magpie) of California, having long, graduated tails, black-and-white plumage, and noisy, mischievous habits.
any of several related corvine birds.
any of several black-and-white birds not related to the true magpies, as Gymnorhina tibicen, of Australia.
an incessantly talkative person; noisy chatterer; chatterbox.
a person who collects or hoards things, especially indiscriminately.
Western U.S. a black-and-white cow or steer, as a Holstein.
any of various passerine birds of the genus Pica, esp P. pica, having a black-and-white plumage, long tail, and a chattering call: family Corvidae (crows, etc)
any of various similar birds of the Australian family Cracticidae See also butcherbird (sense 2)
any of various other similar or related birds
(often capital) a variety of domestic fancy pigeon typically having black-and-white markings
(Brit) a person who hoards small objects
a person who chatters

the outmost ring but one on a target
a shot that hits this ring


Whan pyes chatter vpon a house it is a sygne of ryghte euyll tydynges. [1507]

Divination by number of magpies is attested from c.1780 in Lincolnshire; the rhyme varies from place to place, the only consistency being that one is bad, two are good.


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