Birds of a Feather Flock Together

Meaning of “Birds of a Feather Flock Together”

The proverb “birds of a feather flock together” means people having similar tastes often get together and feel comfortable in each other’s company. It also means that similar people enjoy life together and often gather to exchange ideas. The phrase is also a universal proverb.

Origin of “Birds of a Feather Flock Together”

The proverb “birds of a feather flock together” is originated from William Turner’s book, The Rescuing of Romish Fox, published as back as in 1545, where it goes thus; “Byrdes of on kynde and color flok and flye allwayes together.”

Following this, John Minsheu quotes it in his Dictionarie in Spanish and English published in 1599. Since then, it has become popular with the same words but standardized spelling.

Examples in Literature

Example #1

Birds Of A Feather by Harley White

Opposites may hold attraction
But lack lasting satisfaction.
Frequently push comes to shove.
In comes hate and out goes love.

Animals in fights and fleeings
Still are mostly social beings.
In a pinch, at end of tether,
Birds of a feather flock together.

Multitudes of furry creatures
Seem alike in lots of features.
Yet that’s not their point of view,
And they vie to prove this true.

Mockingbirds may sing like parrots.
Horses, rabbits crunch on carrots.
Many species act as one
To lark and run in the sun.
But in times of stormy weather,
Birds of a feather flock together.

The poem is about unity between the same species. The poet says, though opposites hold attractions for each other, most of the animals live in packs, and birds move as flocks because they share similar tastes and eating habits. The proverb has been repeated after every second stanza to show the same meaning.

Example #2

Why birds of a feather flock together – The Guardian, The Observer, Birds, Robin McKie, Sun 21 Aug 2011

Their displays have long proved a mystery. But, according to a new study, starlings are simple creatures. It is one of the most striking sights of autumn. As days shorten and the weather cools, black clouds gather over Britain’s skies. These dark spectacles have nothing to do with the weather, however. They are made up of thousands of starlings swirling and swooping in the air, performing aerial ballets that appear to be synchronized. Sometimes, flocks shift in shape from globes to hourglasses, thickening and thinning in the atmosphere.

The above article from The Guardian talks about the migration and flying patterns of Starling birds in England. According to the birds’ observer, the birds form a black cloud and maintain perfect synchronization while flying.

Example #3

Strange Phenomena by Kate Bush

We raise our hats to the strange phenomena
Soul birds of a feather flock together
We raise our hats to the hand a-moulding us
Sure ‘nuff, he has the answer
He has the answer
He has the answer

The writer believes that we join the groups of strange things when we find people of the same tastes are sitting together. When we see that something or some people are like us, we know that they have the answer to our problems. When two persons of the same taste meet, they share their knowledge have an answer to each other’s requests.

Example #4

Birds of a Feather Flock Together: Sermons That Use Images from Nature by Jeffrey L. Hunter

Jeffrey Hunter presented how the religious preacher shares information to the people through the use of metaphors. He has selected a few examples from the Bible to illustrate the message of God and even the description of the features of God. These metaphors include various animals. However, the metaphor of birds flocking together is one of the major one that Hunter has pointed out. Hence, he has titled his book with this proverb to present its true meanings.

Examples in Sentences

Example #1: “All the fourth graders loved their art teacher. They always brought her a white rose, which was her favorite. The other teachers notice that said, birds of a feather flock together.”

Example #2: “We are not the birds of a feather to flock together, said Josh. He didn’t want to join the group for the camp.”

Example #3: “The IT company is a perfect example of birds of a feather flock together. No one takes a break for years and spend time in solving a new code.”

Example #4: “Why is everyone so different, we must all be like Birds of a feather and flock together. If we are united, problems can be solved easily.”

Example #5: “The scientists are fascinated by how birds of a feather flock together. They are still studying their migration patterns in all the seasons.”