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The Japanese word for 'sparrow' is スズメ suzume, written with the Chinese character 雀. Unmodified, スズメ suzume refers to Passer montanus.
The ニュウナイスズメ nyū-nai suzume 'court-entering sparrow' is linked to a legend about the poet Fujiwara no Sanekata, who was exiled after an incident at court to the wilds of Tohoku. Sanekata died before he could return to Kyoto. At around the same time a sparrow appeared at the Imperial court and consumed whole bowls of rice at a sitting, giving rise to rumours that the ‘court-entering sparrow’was actually Sanekata’s aggrieved soul. Sanekata’s soul was also linked to the devastation of crops by sparrows, and Passer cinnamomeus, which breeds in the northeast of Japan and descends on rice fields around the country in autumn, is thus identified as ニュウナイスズメ nyū-nai suzume.
The expression 雀の涙 suzume no namida 'sparrow's tears' refers to a lamentably small or trifling amount.
The expression 雀百まで踊り忘れず suzume hyaku made odori wasurezu 'a sparrow doesn't forget how to dance (hop) even when it reaches 100' means that what is learnt in youth is never forgotten. It is often used for less-than-healthy pursuits.
The Japanese fairy-tale 舌切り雀 shita-kiri suzume 'tongue-cut sparrow' exemplifies the moral 'good for good, evil for evil'. The old man who takes care of the sparrow is rewarded; his wife who cuts out the sparrow's tongue gets her just desserts.
SCIENTIFIC & WESTERN
Eng, Fr, Ger, Ru
'enter court sparrow'
'red sparrow' (also Schoeniclus rutilus, Erythrina erythrina, and Amandava amandava)
'mountain zhi zhi'
'island sparrow bird'
||Eurasian tree sparrow
A wealth of popular names (see Hiraizumi)
'tree sparrow' (alt in 1, 3)
'house sparrow' (dialect)
'old house thief' (dialect)
'old house fellow'
'emissary of the queen mother'
ニュウナイ nyū-nai means 'entry into the Imperial court'. According to legend, the poet Fujiwara no Sanekata was exiled to the wilds of Tohoku after an incident at court and died before he could return to Kyoto. The appearance at this time of a sparrow at the Imperial court which consumed whole bowls of rice gave rise to rumours that the 'court-entering sparrow' was Sanekata’s aggrieved soul. Sanekata was also linked to the devastation of crops by sparrows. Passer cinnamomeus, which breeds in the northeast and descends on rice fields around the country in autumn, is thus known as ニュウナイスズメ nyū-nai suzume.
中国鸟类种和亚种分类名录大全（修订版） 郑作新 著 科学出版社 北京 2000年
A Complete Checklist of Species and Subspecies of the Chinese Birds (Revised Edition) by Cheng Tso-Hsin, Science Press, Beijing 2000
中国鸟类分类与分布名录 主编：郑光美 科学出版社 北京 2005年
A Checklist on the Classification and Distribution of the Birds of China Chief editor: Zheng Guangmei, Science Press, Beijing 2005
中国鸟类野外手册（中文版）约翰・马敬能、卡伦・菲利普斯，合作者：荷芬奇，翻译：卢和芬 湖南教育出版社 长沙 2000年
A Field Guide to the Birds of China (Chinese translation) by John MacKinnon, Karen Phillipps, in collaboration with He Fen-qi, translated by Lu Hefen, Hunan Jiaoyu Chubanshe (Hunan Educational Press) Changsha 2000
世界鸟类分类与分布名录 主编：郑光美 科学出版社 北京 2002年
A Checklist on the Classification and Distribution of the Birds of the World Chief editor: Zheng Guangmei, Science Press, Beijing 2002
世界鸟类名称（拉丁文、汉文、英文对照）第二版 郑作新等 科学出版社 北京 2002年
Birds of the World (Latin, Chinese and English Names) 2nd ed. by Cheng Tso-Hsin et al, Science Press, Beijing 2002