little Phoebe

A little list of Five Phoebe things.

  1. Phoebe is a name meaning “bright and shining,” originating from ancient Greek. The first Phoebe was a goddess in Greek mythology, one of the Titans (also spelled Phoibe)
  2. Many Phoebes have since made their appearance in fiction and life, such as Phoebe Snow, used in advertisements for the Lackawanna Railroad in the early 1900s:

  3. Phoebes are birds: “The genus Sayornis is a small group of medium-sized insect-eating birds in the Tyrant flycatcher family Tyrranidaenative to North and South America.” (wiki). They are named for their song, which is said to sound like “fee-bee” (Click here to hear some Phoebe chirping.)
    An Eastern Phoebe
  4. Phoebe is Saturn’s smallest moon, a satellite which was once a comet.
    Phoebe, moon of Saturn.

  5. Phoebe, or Little Phoebe, is a term meaning “five”

    little phoebe

    the cardinal number that is the sum of four and one

    In case this meaning seems completely obscure to you, as it did to me, it appears to have originated in the dice game, craps. Among the “Principal craps terms” listed under the heading for craps in Dictionary of the American West: over 5,000 terms and expressions from Aarigaa! to Zopilote, by Winfred Blevins are these terms for a roll of 5: “fever dice, little Phoebe, feebee, or just Phoebe

This is all by way of saying that my own little Phoebe is five today.

Phoebe, five-year old girl.

Happy birthday, sweet Phoebe.

Image links: a roll of Phoebe with dice, Phoebe (moon), Phoebe (bird), and Phoebe Snow. (All 4 of these are public domain images. The image of Phoebe (child) is not.)

17 thoughts on “little Phoebe

  1. Happy birthday Phoebe!! How exciting!

    My dad always says that the Western phoebe (bird) is very elegant: it sort of looks like it’s wearing a tuxedo. It’s one of my favorites of the birds I see pretty often, despite its failure to be colorful.

  2. Happy birthday Phoebe!

    One of the very first books I remember reading was about a girl named Phoebe and her baby sister Rose. I loved the name Phoebe for years after reading that book… I’m afraid the title is lost to me now — along with the title of my first-read science fiction story: about NewBosPhilWash, the city that stretched along the eastern seaboard. (Some day they’ll both appear in Google!)

  3. She is the most beautiful little girl and this is a great shot of her. Happy b elated (I am sure she is in bed) wishes for her day and for yours, mother. You should be proud.
    Just by the way, we have phoebes (the birds) around here all spring and summer and their call is monotonous and shrill. The baby phoebes, however, have a piercing shriek that makes your head echo and your sinuses ache.

  4. Happy birthday, Phoebe! One of my favourite books when I was five was called Phoebe and the Hot Water Bottles. Unfortunately it’s now out of print, and a used edition will set you back a hundred bucks. I guess that just goes to show that Phoebe is very valuable indeed.

  5. She looks so much more mature than a 5 year old! And I do enjoy looking at the dresses/clothes you picked for Phoebe. Great taste mom!

  6. As per the NewBosPhilWash, I think it came from Nancy Kress in her book Beggars in Spain. It must have come out in 1987-1990. It was about genetically engineered people who were sleepless (like new parents!) as in they didn’t need sleep, or even a bed.

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