Word of the day – oology

Today’s word, oology, refers to the study of eggs, especially bird’s eggs. It also covers the collecting of bird’s eggs and the study of their breeding habits, and their nests, a practice sometimes known as caliology.

Oology is sometimes written oölogy, comes from the Greek ōion, egg, plus ology, a back formation from words like biology.

I came across this word in Jasper Fforde’s wonderfully silly book The Big Over Easy, which centres around the mysterious death of Humpty Dumpty – did he fall or was he pushed?. Oologists are consulted during the investigation.

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This entry was posted in English, Language, Words and phrases.

3 Responses to Word of the day – oology

  1. David says:

    Long-time reader, first time commenter here.

    Nice find with this word. I’m always interested in new words. One question though, what’s the correct English pronunciation?

  2. Simon says:

    David – oology is pronounced roughly “oh-ol-uh-jee” – /oʊˈɒl.ə.dʒi/ in the IPA . You can hear it pronounced here.

  3. Kerry says:

    I think the word “oology” looks funny.

    I wonder if it’ll be common for people to pronounce it as if it has three Os (the way “zoology” is often pronounced).