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powder down

modified down feathers that continually crumble at the tips, producing a fine powder that forms a bloom on the plumage of certain birds, as pigeons and herons. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Historical Examples
  • She reached for them, and poured the powder down the barrels.

    The Road to Frontenac

    Samuel Merwin
  • Buck turned away, and Nora shoved the powder down deep into her jacket pocket, feeling vaguely guilty.

    The Last Spike Cy Warman
  • I had already poured a double charge of powder down my rifle barrel.

    A Volunteer with Pike Robert Ames Bennet
  • Hind toe elevated above plane of others; no powder down patches; bill not hooked at tip.

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