Remembrance of frogs past

by Stefan Fletcher April. 21, 2010 6779 views

These are pictures about sounds.

Growing up in South-East London, I learnt all about frogs with the help of Ladybird books and horror stories of the French and their eating habits. The important thing to retain was that they were green; that princesses kissed them (although heaven knows why) and above all that they went "ribbit, ribbit".

I was later exposed at school to the Attic comedy by Aristophanes called The Frogs. In it, the god of drama engages in a farting contest with the chorus of frogs, who go "brekekekex koax koax“. I remember thinking that the playwright can’t possibly have heard frogs because, as we all know, they go ”ribbit, ribbit“. But such is the influence of this play that the French word for croaking like a frog or toad is ”coasser“.

Twenty years later, I was camping on a mountain in the Peloponnese near the Styx river and was deafened by a chorus of Greek frogs, all going… you guessed it: ”brekekekex koax koax".

Bloody Greeks…

(Recently, I heard that southern America is experiencing huge numbers of frogs. The American Veterinary Association felt obliged to put out a communiqué warning American girls not to kiss them. This happens only in Republics, I hasten to assure all young princesses out there, although that Disney fascist has a lot to answer for.)

Tonight, I went out to catch the night sky. It has been a warm, peaceful night. The village clock struck 10 in a very country way and the occasional dog and cat and night birds could be heard.

But the main sound was the frogs. A wide, soothing, almost hypnotic chorus of them.

I still can’t quite decide what noise they made.

Your answers on a postcard, please (or in the comments section). There is a prize for the correct answer, but you have to be a princess to qualify.

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There are 22 comments , add yours!
Moira 10 years, 8 months ago

Italian frogs go " Gre Gre " I know as my eldest son's 1st primary school book had the sentence . La rana fa "Gre gre" So that helped the other children in his class pronounce his name better " Gregory"
Brilliant evening sky

10 years, 8 months ago Edited
Boisestate 10 years, 8 months ago

WOW is all i can say!!!

10 years, 8 months ago Edited
Mikkal Noptek 10 years, 9 months ago

Wonderful colours

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Centurio 10 years, 9 months ago

great composition colors really amaizing

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Olykaz 10 years, 9 months ago

Absolutely amazing captures. Nice colors

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Hanna Westesson 10 years, 9 months ago

Gorgeous view, great colours!
I prefer the first with the big sky.

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Justgood 10 years, 9 months ago

Very impressing light!

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Rodica O 10 years, 9 months ago

What would this divine view be without the sound of the frogs, they are like a chorus of little angels landed on Earth singing "hallelujah-hallelujah-hallelujah!" ;)
Love the colours.

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Ray King 10 years, 9 months ago

Beautiful shots. Fun story.

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Karen 10 years, 9 months ago

Well at home in Australian they say 'G'day Mate' but here in saudi, I can't work it out as their voice is muffled as they are covered by a head scarf....
We had frogs around our outside toilet at our holiday house, and they used to scare the bejesus out of me (when I was a kid of course!).

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
David Swatton 10 years, 9 months ago

This is another thing we can blame on the Yanks... the only frogs that go "ribbit" are indigenous to California... see where this is going? The local Hollywood frog sound was used in movies and consequently used thereafter as the default frog sound everywhere... irrespective of where the film was actually set. It's strange because I thought frogs went "mon dieu"!

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Marisolsol 10 years, 9 months ago

Un tratamiento maravilloso a las imagenes,buen trabajo....saludos

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Art Bee 10 years, 9 months ago

Canadian frogs say "croak eh" ..... Fantastic Images!

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Eiram Marie 10 years, 9 months ago

Czech frogs go like this: kvak, kvak, kvak.

but I am not a princess:))

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
John Wright 10 years, 9 months ago

Great story. Great images.

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Lynda 10 years, 9 months ago

Gorgeous shot. Makes me think of a bedtime book when I was 2 or 3 with illustrations of a beautiful star filled sky

Wynken, Blynken, and Nod one night
Sailed off in a wooden shoe---
Sailed on a river of crystal light,
Into a sea of dew.

btw I kept tadpoles and frogs as pets (my dad wouldn't get me a dog!) and don't understand how anyone can eat les cuisses de grenouilles

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Pete 10 years, 9 months ago

stunning photo
the lighting is superb to catch the stars

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Sadhya Rippon 10 years, 9 months ago

You may be interested to know that Welsh frogs say "Crawc, crawc, crawc.
That really is a fairy tale landscape and sky.

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Sandra Vermeulen 10 years, 9 months ago

I assure you, the Belgian frogs make the noise "[b]ribbit ribbit[/b]"

Never I saw a sky so wonderful purple as here!!

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Thebronzebow 10 years, 9 months ago

Alas, I am in no way a princess... Love the pics though!

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Jarvo J 10 years, 9 months ago

Beautiful images - love the colour of the sky.

10 years, 9 months ago Edited
Helen Hooker 10 years, 9 months ago

Who'd have thought frogs had different national languages too?! I wonder if they use babelfish as translation devices so they can understand each other ;-)

10 years, 9 months ago Edited