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"We space all acquainted with a herd of cows, a i m crying of chickens, a college of fish and also a gaggle that geese," the e-mail begins. "However, less widely well-known is a proud of lions, a killing of crows (as well together their cousins the rooks and also ravens), an exaltation the doves and, presumably since they look therefore wise, a conference of owls."Now think about a group of baboons. They are the loudest, many dangerous, many obnoxious, many viciously aggressive and also least smart of all primates. And what is the proper collective noun because that a team of baboons? believe it or not ... A Congress! ns guess the pretty much defines the things that come the end of Washington!"We at betterworld2016.org have learned from suffer to be hesitant of anything we check out in the contagion that e-mails us receive. However we wondered, since we"re constantly skeptical of our very own skepticism, can this just be a joke, or can this small tidbit it is in true?First stop: Dictionary.com. None of the meanings for congress described baboons, apes, monkeys or primates. A "congress" can be a meeting or conference of any group, however the e-mail provides it clear that this is a particular term because that a gathering of baboons.Merriam-Webster.com also produced negative results. For this reason did the online version of the Oxford Dictionary and the 2,059-page Random home Unabridged thesaurus from 1973 in ours newsroom.Two locations where we did discover it were sources in which basically anybody can insert a definition on a whim: Wikipedia and also UrbanDictionary.com. (In the metropolitan Dictionary, someone added the definition on Sept. 3, 2011, in solution to the e-mail.)So we turned to Orin Hargraves, a freelance lexicographer and also president that the Dictionary society of north America.The names for collections of animals are dubbed "terms that venery," and Hargraves stated the ideal reference source for lock is the 1968 publication "An Exaltation that Larks" through James Lipton, hold of "Inside the gibbs Studio."The an initial part that the book, which examines genuine terms, has actually no reference to baboons. Just in the section that includes whimsical terms that Lipton coined or uncovered is there any reference come the primates. "A rumpus that baboons" is detailed right alongside "a buffoonery of orangutans." (One of our favorites: "a prickle that porcupines.")Hargraves can find no proof that conference is the correct term. "Apparently someone simply made that up," the said. "It has actually the ring of truthiness and so human being like it. They execute behave choose the caricature of the baboons, yet I think actual baboons probably behave a lot of better."We also turned to 2 anthropologists who really know baboons.Shirley Strum is in ~ the university of California, san Diego, and director that the Uaso Ngiro Baboon task in Nairobi,Kenya. Larissa Swedell is at kings College of the City college of new York and studies the primates in Ethiopia and also South Africa.Both claimed the exactly term because that a team of baboons is a "troop.""I have never heard the ax congress used for a group of baboons!" Swedell stated in one e-mail."I would prefer to be governed by baboons 보다 the present Congress, however!!! castle are an ext socially committed, abide by the golden rule and are normally nicer people," stated Strum, also in an e-mail.Swedell discussed the e-mail’s description of baboons. "Least intelligent? No way. … amongst monkeys, baboons space pretty smart," she said, adding that primates are probably much more dangerous.Baboons space "socially sophisticated and incredibly smart" and among primates, "no varieties is as dangerous together humans," claimed Strum. "Only baboons who have actually been spoiled by people feeding them are dangerous and are never ever as aggressive as humans."Finally, we searched Google publications for "congress of baboons" and came up with simply 10 books with the phrase. In contrast, "troop that baboons" developed 393 hits.Our rulingThe e-mail claiming that a team of baboons is recognized as a congress states the insurance claim as fact and also tickles our sense of irony at a time once the U.S. Congress" approval rating is around 16 percent or lower.But the correct term is a "troop."You might be tempted to contact the U.S. Congress a group of baboons, however a group of baboons is not a congress.If someone presents this joke e-mail come you as the truth, tell them they should step away from the acting detector since they"ve obtained Pants ~ above Fire!(Get updates indigenous betterworld2016.orgRI top top Twitter. Come comment or sell your ruling, visit us on ours betterworld2016.org Rhode Island on facebook page.)