One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1British A quilt filled with down (originally from the eider) or some other soft material.
cover, covering, rug, afghan, quilt, duvetView synonyms
- ‘The father of the house where Teddy is staying at the outbreak of war throws a white eiderdown out of a window in a rage.’
- ‘We would set out to warm her up by driving two miles in second gear with an old eiderdown over her bonnet.’
- ‘I pulled the eiderdown over my head and hugged myself, but my own arms gave me no comfort.’
- ‘The searchers had ripped apart the mattress, the eiderdown, and the pillows.’
- ‘The Queen had her doubts about the girl being a princess, and is determined to find out the truth by placing a pea under the mattress and eiderdown of the princess's bed.’
- ‘‘Just leave it on the desk, thank you,’ I mumbled into the eiderdown.’
- ‘It was lovely to be in a decent bed with sheets and eiderdowns.’
- ‘It was always such a relief to get back to Auntie Lizzie's so we could use her eiderdown quilts to slide down the stairs (sit on the top step, at the end of the quilt, fold it over your feet, hold both corners and launch yourself over the edge).’
- ‘I sat up in a tangle of sheets and eiderdowns, trying to get my breathing back down to a more reasonable rate.’
- ‘Precious pastry cooks declared it needed to rest on an eiderdown before it went in the oven, after which baking took place in an atmosphere of maternity.’
- ‘Clara tucked the eiderdown about his shoulders.’
- ‘A couple of fancy shirts, several pair of dress trousers, and other garments were neatly spread out on the eiderdown coverlet.’
- ‘I shivered in the folds of the eiderdown wrapped around my shoulders and drew it tighter, trying to foil an errant draught.’
- ‘She lay in the middle of the big bed, her slender figure - now thinned by her illness - seeming lost in the stacks of blankets and eiderdowns and pillows and cushions and sheets.’
- ‘They went upstairs, undressed and climbed between the cool sheets covered with the heavy eiderdown.’
- ‘Later she became known as the lampshade lady after she and her husband opened a shop over the road where she made and sold lampshades, eiderdowns and similar items.’
- ‘Some talk of rosy cheeks and country air, and fresh food and plump eiderdowns and lifelong friends.’
- ‘That night, they fell asleep in Victoria's living room, lounged against each other and wrapped in an eiderdown quilt.’
2mass noun Small, soft feathers from the breast of the female eider.
plume, quillView synonyms
- ‘Eiderdown is exceptionally soft and has insulating properties superior to any other down.’
- ‘I felt the crisp Arctic air and ran my hand through Musk-ox hair that was as soft as eider down.’
- ‘Iceland is one of the last major sources of Eider Down in the world.’
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