Friday, March 02, 2007

Feather-weight




I was just trawling through the dictionary (don't ask why, I have this weird curiosity about words and where they come from and how some words are connected with others) and I happened to find the definition of feather.
Now, feathers are soft, gentle, light, tickling devices. They give birds wings. They are the basic units that allow flight. They used to decorate pens in Shakespeare's time. They can be seen on exotic, colorful costumes. Don't they have this soft association to them?
But here's how the dictionary defined it! And it is so unromantic I just thought I'd share it as trivia:
Main Entry: 1feath·er

Pronunciation: 'fe-[th]&r

Function: noun

Etymology: Middle English fether, from Old English; akin to Old High German federa wing, Latin petere to go to, seek, Greek petesthai to fly, piptein to fall, pteron wing

1 a : any of the light horny epidermal outgrowths that form the external covering of the body of birds and that consist of a shaft bearing on each side a series of barbs which bear barbules which in turn bear barbicels commonly ending in hooked hamuli and interlocking with the barbules of an adjacent barb to link the barbs into a continuous vane.

sigh....


2 comments:

The Mad Momma said...

hmmm... newly married.. feathers... hm.... already experimenting?

Who ees thees Anamika? said...

heh heh...mad momma, i can see ur dirty mind working overtime ;)

after reading this definition, don't u think feathers get ruled out of, ahem(!)experiments? wink wink wink...