- 1Any of the flat appendages growing from a bird’s skin and forming its plumage, consisting of a partly hollow horny shaft fringed with vanes of barbs: the waxwing has very bright feathers and a prominent crest Sally-Anne, dolled up in ostrich feathers and pearlsMore example sentences
- When the color of the landscape changes, females shed their white plumage as brown replacement feathers grow in.
- But the creature's most unusual feature was a set of long, asymmetric feathers with hooked barbs on its hind limbs and forelimbs.
- Primary wing feathers create the flight surface, thus allowing birds to fly.
- 1.1 (feathers) A fringe of long hair on the legs of a dog, horse, or other animal.More example sentences
- Use a pin brush or slicker brush in the feathers to separate the hair and to remove tangles.
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- 1 [with object] Rotate the blades of (a propeller) about their own axes in such a way as to lessen the air or water resistance.More example sentences
- A fire erupted in the starboard engine and the pilot was unable to feather the propeller.
- He shut down the engine, feathered the propeller and entered a power-off emergency descent.
- Ken shut down the engine and feathered the propeller while Bob returned to his turret.
- 1.1Vary the angle of attack of (rotor blades).More example sentences
- Orbiting over the airport, he undertook a series of flight tests which included stalls, feathering and restarting each engine, and a beat-up on the field.
- Flames were roaring out of the left nacelle as Hart pulled the fire bottles, yanked the throttle back, and feathered the prop.
- 1.2 Rowing Turn (an oar) so that it passes through the air edgeways: he turned, feathering one oar slowlyMore example sentences
- The others, even the ones who had never rowed before this day, feathered their oars like pros and smiled like kids in the candy store.
- 2 [no object, with adverbial] Float or move like a feather: the green fronds feathered against a blue skyMore example sentences
- Twigs and leaves, from overgrown bushes - half hung in the road - bashed and feathered against his clothes.
- 3 [with object] Blend or smooth delicately: feather the paint in, in a series of light strokesMore example sentences
- If organized is quite the word - but the point is, you could put ink on and it was much more inclined to stay put, so we could start tinkering with feathering and other decorative techniques.
- He often employed a personal technique: feathering his surfaces on the top layer with small white brushstrokes, which delicately muffle the colors underneath.
- 4 [no object] (Of ink, lipstick, etc.) separate into tiny lines after application: (as noun feathering) a long-lasting formula that resists feathering and protects the lipsMore example sentences
- Packaged in a sleek gold tube, it keeps lips smooth, fills in any lines around lips and prevents lipstick from feathering around your mouth (even on smokers).
- 5 short for feather cut.
a feather in one's cap
- An achievement to be proud of: beating him would be a feather in my capMore example sentences
- ‘That's a feather in your cap,’ someone told me today.
- ‘It's a feather in your cap when you are asked to be captain, especially by someone like Paul Broadbent,’ he said.
- It's a bit of a feather in their cap if they can keep him quiet because he's run riot this season.
feather one's (own) nest
- Make money for oneself in an opportunistic or selfish way: he may have decided to feather his nest by blackmailMore example sentences
- I don't mind that he may have feathered his nest (after all we live in a capitalist society where feathering nests is the be all and end all).
- A whole bunch of so called scientists, lawyers and, most important, politicians, have taken it over in the meantime to feather their own nest.
- The people simply don't believe that politics has much changed, and regard the entire lot of politicians as corrupt species out to feather their own nest.
(as) light as a feather
- Extremely light and insubstantial.More example sentences
- After a full massage, including my stomach, I felt absolutely wonderful - light as a feather.
- The thing does a good job, and it's as light as a feather.
- Yesterday I had trouble lifting a bucket of sand that two weekends ago was as light as a feather.
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- Using artificial insemination, they propagated offspring that would produce both feathered and featherless broilers that would grow to comparable size in the same length of time.
- On the other hand, featherless chickens tend to be more susceptible to parasites and other problems and, in previous attempts to create featherless chickens, the males have been unable to mate.
- It was featherless, but stood a foot tall on spindly jointed legs; its face was avian but - like the body - fat and dotted with patchy, moulting orange fur.
Old English fether, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch veer and German Feder, from an Indo-European root shared by Sanskrit patra 'wing', Latin penna 'feather', and Greek pteron, pterux 'wing'.