[this-uh l-doun]


the mature, silky pappus of a thistle.

Origin of thistledown

First recorded in 1555–65; thistle + down2 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for thistledown

Historical Examples of thistledown

  • Her talk and she are both as light and wandering as thistledown.

    Robert Elsmere

    Mrs. Humphry Ward

  • They sailed from her on the faint hot breeze lightly as thistledown.

    The Dop Doctor

    Clotilde Inez Mary Graves

  • Once, twice it swished; the third time it alighted like thistledown on the surface.

  • But the thistledown was still as death, and the face of his old master.

    Five Tales

    John Galsworthy

  • She made a movement with her lips as if she was blowing a bit of thistledown from her.

    Home Life in Germany

    Mrs. Alfred Sidgwick

British Dictionary definitions for thistledown



the mass of feathery plumed seeds produced by a thistle
anything resembling this
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012