Par"tridge(pr"trj), n. [OE. partriche, pertriche, OF. pertris, perdriz, F. perdrix, L. perdix, -icis, fr. Gr. pe`rdix.] (Zol.) 1. Any one of numerous species of small gallinaceous birds of the genus Perdix and several related genera of the family Perdicid, of the Old World. The partridge is noted as a game bird.
Full many a fat partrich had he in mew.Chaucer.
The common European, or gray, partridge (Perdix cinerea) and the red-legged partridge (Caccabis rubra) of Southern Europe and Asia are well-known species.
2. Any one of several species of quail-like birds belonging to Colinus, and allied genera.
Among them are the bobwhite (Colinus Virginianus) of the Eastern States; the plumed, or mountain, partridge (Oreortyx pictus) of California; the Massena partridge (Cyrtonyx Montezum); and the California partridge (Callipepla Californica).
3. The ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus).
(Zol.), a spurred partridge of the genus Bambusicola. Several species are found in China and the East Indies. --
(Zol.), the woodcock.
[Local, U.S.] --
(Zol.), a francolin of South Africa (Francolinus pictus). --
(Bot.) (a) The scarlet berry of a trailing american plant (Mitchella repens) of the order Rubiace, having roundish evergreen leaves, and white fragrant flowers sometimes tinged with purple, growing in pairs with the ovaries united, and producing the berries which remain over winter; also, the plant itself. (b) The fruit of the creeping wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens); also, the plant itself. --
(Zol.) Same as
Mountain witch, under Mountain. --
(Bot.), a yellow-flowered leguminous herb (Cassia Chamcrista), common in sandy fields in the Eastern United States. --
(Zol.), a large marine univalve shell (Dolium perdix), having colors variegated like those of the partridge. --
Partridge wood (a) A variegated wood, much esteemed for cabinetwork. It is obtained from tropical America, and one source of it is said to be the leguminous tree Andira inermis. Called also
pheasant wood. (b) A name sometimes given to the dark-colored and striated wood of some kind of palm, which is used for walking sticks and umbrella handles. --
(Zol.), an Asiatic sand partridge (Ammoperdix Bonhami); -- so called from its note. --
(Zol.), a large spurred partridge (Lerwa nivicola) which inhabits the high mountains of Asia; called also
Spruce partridge. See under Spruce. --
(Zol.), any small Asiatic partridge of the genus Arboricola.
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Thu 14th November 2019