Title: Cognitive History About Cuckoo and Azalea in China
Author: LUO Gui-huan    
Jounal: 北京林业大学学报:社会科学版
YEAR: 2020
Vol.: 19
No.: 1
Page: 45-51
Abstract: It is peculiar and interesting that the Chinese name of cuckoo(Dujuan in pinyin) is used both for bird and flower(Azalea). Many historical records showed cuckoo was a general name of bird species which are distributed almost in the whole China. Their cry, for the temporal and acoustic characteristics,was used as a sign of phenology in agricultural activities reminding people of farming activities in ancient China, thus they were also called farming birds. The name of cuckoo in China came from a legend among ancient Sichuan people. Since the Tang Dynasty, the beautiful flower azalea which is grown widely in southern China was called "cuckoo" or "cuckoo flower" because its florescence coincides with the time of the cuckoo’s crying, and was gradually cultivated as ornamental plants in gardens. Since the introduction of the modern biology from the west, the connotation of Chinese name of cuckoo was further expanded,becoming a general name of Rhododendron species. Study of the change of names of animals and plants in history, is not only very interesting, but can also help us to explain some peculiarities in traditional natural history of China.