bobolink

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English[edit]

A male bobolink in breeding plumage

Etymology[edit]

Imitative of its song. Compare Bob Lincoln.

Noun[edit]

bobolink (plural bobolinks)

  1. An American migratory songbird, Dolichonyx oryzivorus, resembling a blackbird with the bill of a finch.
    • a. 1887 (date written), Emily Dickinson, “(please specify the chapter or poem)”, in M[abel] L[oomis] Todd and M[illicent] T[odd] Bingham, editors, Bolts of Melody, New York, N.Y.: Harper & Row, published 1945, page 330:
      Lethe in my flower / Of which they who drink / In the fadeless orchards / Hear the bobolink.
    • 1993, TC Boyle, The Road to Wellville, Penguin, published 1994, page 297:
      The San's feeders were mobbed with sparrows and jays and the starlings that had just begun to colonize the area, but there was no sign of robin, bobolink or oriole.

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