One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A small tree-nesting East Asian duck, the male of which has showy plumage with an orange ruff and orange sail-like feathers on each side of the body.
Aix galericulata, family Anatidae
- ‘The four carved tiles directly below the hood depict pairs of magpies, phoenixes, mandarin ducks, and swallows, all symbols of harmonious matrimonial union.’
- ‘The mandarin duck represented faithfulness, the magpie good luck.’
- ‘Besides wild swans and cranes, some rare migratory birds such as mandarin duck, large and small swans, white swans, white neck cranes, and cray cranes can be seen there.’
- ‘Waterfowl, such as the gaudy mandarin duck, no longer nest in its wetlands; fish have been driven upriver or out to sea, or have gone extinct.’
- ‘The various pairs of animals - deer, mandarin ducks, and dogs convey wishes for a long life and marriage.’
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