• WordNet 3.6
    • n titmouse small insectivorous birds
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The penculine titmouse of Africa builds its home in such a sturdy manner that Masai tribesman use their nests for purses and carrying cases.
    • n Titmouse (Zoöl) Any one of numerous species of small insectivorous singing birds belonging to Parus and allied genera; -- called also tit, and tomtit.☞ The blue titmouse (Parus cœruleus), the marsh titmouse (Parus palustris), the crested titmouse (Parus cristatus), the great titmouse (Parus major), and the long tailed titmouse (Ægithalos caudatus), are the best-known European species. See Chickadee.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n titmouse A tit; a tomtit; any bird of the family Paridæ, and especially of the subfamily Parinæ. (See the technical names, and cuts under chickadee and Parus.) Those of the genus Parus which occur in Great Britain, and hence have popular English names, are the greater titmouse, P. major; the coal-tit, P. ater (of which the British variety is sometimes called P. britannicus); the marsh-tit, P. palustris; the blue tit, P. cæruleus: and the crested tit, P. (Lophophanes) cristatus. The long-tailed titmouse is Acredula caudata or rosea. The bearded titmouse is Panurus (or Calamophilus) biarmicus (sometimes put in another family, Panuridæ). in the United States are a number of titmice, commonly called chickadees, with smooth heads and black caps and throats, as Parus atricapillus, etc. There are also several crested ones, forming the genus or subgenus Lophophanes, as the peto, or tufted titmouse, L. bicolor, the black-crested, L. atrocristatus, and others. Titmice which build long pensile nests are called in England bottle-tits, and by many provincial names, including poke-pudding. Those of the United States which have this habit are the bush-tits of the genus Psaltriparus. (See cut under bush-tit.) Others, of Europe and Africa, form the genus Ægithalus, as Æpendulinus, the penduline titmouse. The gold tit, or yellow-headed titmouse, of the southwestern United States, Auriparus flaviceps, also builds a very bulky and elaborate nest of twigs stuffed with feathers. Some of the British tits are called oxeye, and others hickwall.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • Titmouse a genus of little birds, which feed on insects, &c.:—pl. Titmice (tit′mīs)
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OE. titemose, titmase,; tit, small, or a small bird + AS. māse, a kind of small bird; akin to D. mees, a titmouse, G. meise, OHG. meisa, Icel. meisingr,. The English form has been influenced by the unrelated word mouse,. Cf. Tit a small bird
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Obs. Eng. tit, anything small; A.S. máse; Ger. meise, a small bird.


In literature:

One readily recalls Emerson's "Titmouse," Trowbridge's "Pewee," Celia Thaxter's "Sandpiper," and others of a like character.
"Birds and Poets" by John Burroughs
Two subspecies of the Black-crested Titmouse are present in Coahuila.
"Birds from Coahuila, Mexico" by Emil K. Urban
Titmouse will be stamping about his box like a maniac if he doesn't get those apples.
"Vixen, Volume I." by M. E. Braddon
A dozen of this is as bad as a Mortgage upon my Titmouse Farm.
"The Strange Adventures of Captain Dangerous, Vol. 2 of 3" by George Augustus Sala
This Titmouse has a black crest and the forehead is white; otherwise similar to the preceding.
"The Bird Book" by Chester A. Reed
Then a Tufted Titmouse squeals.
"Birds Illustrated by Color Photography [June, 1897]" by Various
Mr. Titmouse was surprised at the gentleman's knowledge of the family history of the Titmouses.
"Ten Thousand a-Year. Volume 1." by Samuel Warren
The titmouse took the cotton and would have taken the wicking, I think, if it had not been fastened in too tight for her.
"A-Birding on a Bronco" by Florence A. Merriam
The tufted titmouse also relies to a large extent on the seeds for its winter food.
"The Forest Habitat of the University of Kansas Natural History Reservation" by Henry S. Fitch
Theirs was one of three titmouse nests just then claiming my attention.
"A Rambler's lease" by Bradford Torrey

In poetry:

If you would happy company win,
Dangle a palm-nut from a tree,
Idly in green to sway and spin,
Its snow-pulped kernel for bait; and see,
A nimble titmouse enter in.
"The Titmouse" by Walter de la Mare
The crocus prick with its spears aglow
'Gainst the rallying flakes of the routed snow,
The isle—keeping titmouse wed and hatch,
And the swallow come home to its native thatch:
"The Passing Of The Primroses" by Alfred Austin

In news:

Chickadees belong to the Paridae family, more commonly called the titmouse family.
I remember, as a child, learning from my mother how to discern the crest of the tufted titmouse, the rasping chatter of a house wren and the pendent nest of an oriole.
I looked out the back window of my house over the weekend and on the bird feeders there were three birds – a chickadee, a titmouse and a white-breasted nuthatch – all in a straight line, and perfectly spaced.
This Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor) was puffed up against the blowing snow in Candor, New York.