The daughters of the Macedonian king Pierus. Their name refers to Emathia, a part of Macedonia, or to their uncle Emathus, but are also called Pierides, after Pierus himself. They once challenged the Muses to a contest, and one of them sings of Typhoeus and the flight of the gods to Egypt. The Emathides are defeated and turned into magpies for their insolence.

Pierides is also a surname of the Muses, either after the region of Pieria in Thessaly or from King Pierus who reputedly introduced their worship.1

The birds are called: Colymbas, Iyngx, Cenchris, Cissa, Chloris, Acalanthis, Nessa, Pipo, and Dracontis.



  1. Pausanias. Description of Greece xi, 29.2.


  • Ovid. Metamorphoses v, 294-331, 642-678.