Saturday, February 24, 2007

Bovine Linguistics

This is probably thoroughly inappropriate as a topic during Lent, but it is just too cute to pass up.

For my morning and evening offices, I follow the lectionary in the 1662 BCP. This morning's Old Testament reading was from Genesis 41, in which Joseph inteprets Pharoah's dream to be the prophecy of a famine.

In the KJV, verse two reads: "And, behold, there came up out of the river seven well favoured kine and fatfleshed; and they fed in a meadow."

I knew, of course, that we were talking about oxen, or cattle, here, but I had never seen the word "kine" before.

So I googled it and found the following:

Bovine Linguistics

A while back I made the discovery that cattle aren't as dumb as most people think. After many years of careful field observation, I determined that they speak a simple language, and actually have a vocabulary of over 100 words (they just get a real kick out of saying "moo"). Below is a rough gloss of Kine, the language of cattle. Note that this is one specific dialect (Wisconsin-Holstein) and that there may be substantial variations by region or breed.

Read it all here.


Anonymous said...

Any word when the Kine version of the Daily Offices will be available?

poetreader said...

In 2000, though still very much an Evangelical Protestant, I was very disturbed at some of the theologies being promilgated. I wrote this as the heading of a peice on "Sola Scriptura"

Bovine Droppingsin the Place of Prayer

Many are the sacred cattle
wandering through the sacred halls
in the awesome sacred precincts
of the sacred church of God,
many sacred cattle leaving
evidence upon the sacred floor
where their sacred feet have trod.
Many cows, much evidence
in which upon the floor there grows
a strange and various vegetation,
nourished by what has been left,
and fertilized, and rank with life
of many types and many shapes
whose weirdly formed
and wildly branching limbs
boldly bear a strange
and psychedelic fruit
which when partaken makes men mad
and banishes good sense
and turns discourse into blather
which doesn’t end.

ed pacht

Albion Land said...

Moo' mom xoonoo muumm

poetreader said...

xuuh memoo mo' huuh moo

Alice C. Linsley said...

What a hoot! (As you see, I don't speak bovine.)

poetreader said...

according to the vocabulary in the link provided, Albion, apparently commenting on my poem said (If I interpret correctly)

After the religion commitee vote

probably in reference to Dar-Es-Salaam. I responded, perhaps a little rudely, with the same referent,

cow defecating on soiled grass flatulates -- nonsense

ed pacht

Albion Land said...

No, Ed, I was answering D Bunker's question.

poetreader said...

Oops, sorry about that. However, it works both ways nonetheless.


Anonymous said...

muumm uuuh'nuum mom-moohm
(may the vote be pleasing to the Religion-Monarch--GOD--the horatory subjunctive seems to be a nuance lacking in Cow-speak). roox nuux (humour is sweet grass)!!!!

Warwickensis said...

Isn't this rather a load of bull?

Well, it's better thsn the bull that seems to be coming out of other quarters.