Elster

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German[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle High German elster, alster, agelster, from Old High German agalstra, from Proto-Germanic *agalistrijǭ (magpie). Cognate with German Low German Eekster, Heekster (magpie).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (file)

Noun[edit]

Elster f (genitive Elster, plural Elstern)

  1. magpie

Usage notes[edit]

  • In the folklore of German-speaking Europe (as well as many other parts of Europe), the magpie is accused of being in the habit of stealing small objects such as jewellery, coins, etc. Therefore the bird is often called diebische Elster (thievish magpie), and this epithet is also used jocularly to describe someone who takes or borrows things without asking.

Declension[edit]

Related terms[edit]