Note: Information is dated. Do not rely on it.Peacock. The common name of a genus of beautiful birds, including only the common peacock and the Javanese peacock. The name properly belongs to the male, but it is popularly applied to the species in general, though the female is, for distinction's sake, called a peahen. Like other domesticated birds, the common peacock exhibits several varieties. The ordinary length of this splendid bird, from the tip of the bill to that of the full-grown fan-expanded tail, is about four feet. The female is rather less. Her train is not only very short, but destitute of those brilliant hues and striking beauties which adorn the male; her crest, too, is less developed, and her whole plumage partakes of a cinereous hue. When pleased, the peacock erects his tail, unfolds his feathers, and frequently turns around, as if to catch the sun-beams in every direction, accompanying this movement with a hollow murmuring. At other times his cry is very disagreeable, and often repeated, especially before rain. Every year he sheds his plumes, and courts the most obscure retreats until the returning spring renews his luster. The Javanese peacock resembles the common kind, but has a larger crest.
“It is most profitable, it is blessed, to be always looking beyond second causes in all our trials and distresses, and to discern the Lord's hand, in infinite love and wisdom, appointing all. For this brings the soul into a state of resignation and tranquility at least, if not of holy Joy.”
–Robert Hawker, Poor Man’s Commentary, Psalm 17