Definition of feather noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



BrE BrE//ˈfeðə(r)//
; NAmE NAmE//ˈfeðər//
Parts of animals
jump to other results
  •   one of the many soft light parts covering a bird’s body a peacock feather a feather pillow (= one containing feathers) See related entries: Parts of animals
  • Word OriginOld 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’.Extra examples I had to pluck the dead hen’s feathers. Its feathers were ruffled by the chill breeze. The chicks have grown their adult feathers. The owl fluffed out its feathers. a fledgling with new flight feathers a swan preening its feathers plucking the dead hen’s feathers the downy feathers on the duck’s breastIdioms
    birds of a feather (flock together)
    jump to other results
    (saying) people of the same sort (are found together)
    an action that you can be proud of This idiom comes from the Native American custom of giving a feather to somebody who had been very brave in battle. See related entries: Proud
    ruffle somebody’s/a few feathers
    jump to other results
    (informal) to annoy or upset somebody or a group of people The senator's speech ruffled a few feathers in the business world. See related entries: Anger
    smooth (somebody’s) ruffled feathers
    jump to other results
    to make somebody feel less angry or offended
    you could have knocked me down with a feather
    jump to other results
    (informal) used to express surprise
    See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: feather