cock

General - The male of the fowl, a bird. Domesticated in many countries, in many cases regarded as sacred. (1) In the bestiaries the only bird to be castrated. (2) In China the cock is called kung-ch'i and is regarded as a divine bird that carries the sun through part of the zodiac. Some say it could become a human being while others say that it drives away ghosts when it crows at dawn. A picture of a cock pasted on a coffin is said to drive away demons. (3) In Germany the bird is regarded as a weather prophet. (4) In Greek lore the cock is the bird of Apollo and Athena. It was sacrificed to Asclepius in recognition of recovery from illness. (5) In Japan the cock is known as tokoyo-na-ganaki-dori and is said to prepare the heart for worship. (6) The Norse regard the cock as a guardian. In the realm of Midgard, Gullinkambi lived on the tree Yggdrasil. In Valhalla, Fialar's duty was to waken the warriors for the final battle. (7) The Romans consulted the cock as an augury, particularly on the weather. (8) An old Scottish custom involved the sacrifice of a cock as a cure for epilepsy. Also referred to as cock, kung-ch'i, kung-ch'i, gallus, gallus or Khrut.

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