Collective nouns

Jul 1, 2003
Subsequent to Colin's suggestion of "A Cuddle of Cuttlefish" in the "Diving/snorkeling experiences with squid" thread, I got to wondering. Are there any official collective nouns for cephs? I conducted an EXHAUSTIVE (ok, I looked for 5 minutes :smile: ) websearch which turned up nothing! Can it be that there is no grammatically sanctioned manner by which to refer to multiples of our slimy friends?

I think a Cuddle of Cuttlefish is pretty good. I'm putting out a call for similar terms for squid, octopus, etc etc. And who knows... If I'm right and there aren't already "official" collective nouns out there, if we send our suggestions to collective noun sites that accept submissions, ours could even become pseudo-official! We could change the language.... and then THE WORLD! Wah-ha-ha-ha!!!! :twisted: Oooops...sorry.... letting the old evil genius persona run lose again. Bad Rachel.

How about an Abyss of Architeuthis? That's all I can think of at the moment.
I suppose a squad of squid is too cliche; how about a knot of Nautilus? Army of Ammonites? Can we coin the phrase 'an oodle of octopus'?

maybe a murder of Mesonychoteuthis? i think a beast of that size with hooks is more deserving of it than crows.....

a clutch of cuttles?
a [blank]load of squid?

what about a union of octopus? i first got the idea thinking along the lines of murder or crows, but realised its probably really unlikely that anyone would run across a group of non-related octos (think brotherhood -> union)... plus you wouldnt get objections from conservative elements since if a pair was spotted, wouldnt there be a good chance that theyd be a mating pair? thus, the people can feel reassured in their beliefs (even if the father ends up wandering off after mating, there still was a union)

of course i could just be pulling ideas out of submarine trenchs where the sun dont shine again.....
A tangle of octopuses?

Considering collective nouns, do jellyfish swarm or school? Lots of comb jellies last Friday at the beach, very pretty in the water, but less so with the kids throwing them at each other!

This note from my sweetie:

I think there are a number of possible collective nouns for octopi.
Here are some possibilities:

a tangle of octopuses
a knot of octopuses
a sucker of octopuses
an armful of octopuses
a grasp of octopuses

For squid, I'm pretty sure that it is

a jet of squid

You might also have

a cloud of inkfish


a boneyard of cuttlefish

Moving away from cephalopods, you get

a snap of clams


a smart of jellyfish

Or perhaps

a glob of jellyfish

The collective noun for sharks is, of course, 'a law firm'.

A nucleus of nautiloids?

A bullet of belemnites?

A gaggle of goniatites?

A goth of Vampyroteuthis?

Lots of Loligo?

A schwerpunkt of Spirula?

An odyssey of argonauts?/ A jason of argonauts?

A Clem of jellyfish?
An Eyden of ale???

How big is that? A six foot pint?..... then you really could stagger home in the wee hours and claim to have had, 'just the one'
Clem said:
An Eyden of ale?

What are you trying to imply? I'll let you know I have not had a drink for thirteen hours now. That makes me tea-total by my standards.

A Bacardi Breezer of Benthoctopus

A Vodka of Vampyroteuthis

A Lager of Loligo

A Guinness of Grimpoteuthis

A Gin of Giant Pacific Octopus

A Whiskey of Wunderpus

An Absinthe of Ammonites

A Sangria of Small-egg Caribbean Pygmy Octopus


1) :beer: + :beer: +:beer:+ :beer: + :beer: +:beer: = :bonk:
2) :bonk: + :ammonite: = :police: x :oops:

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