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Pity the pigeon

Posted by Word Camel on December 15, 2003

In Reply to: Pigeon toed posted by Harold on December 15, 2003

: : Why are people who walk with their feet turned inwards known as being pigeon toed? I have pigeons and I've watched them and the native pigeons that land on my verandah and they walk with their feet straight ahead. The parrots however walk in a very pigeon toed fashion. So why pick a pigeon, when it would be more correct to say parrot toed?

: Parrots were in short supply in England in the old days and, for that matter, they still are. I can't claim to be an expert on pidgeons but have a shrewd idea that if all thir talons/toes pointed straight ahead they would fall over in even a light wind.

City pigeons are always worse for the wear and it's always seems to be the toes that go first. They loose their toe tails, then a toe or two and before long they are hobbling around on disfigured 'bird knuckles'. Perhaps that's where the expression comes from - city pigeons.