Definition for DOWN

DOWN, n.1 [Sw. dun; D. dons; Dan. duun; Ice. Id. In Sw. dyna is a feather-bed, or cushion; Dan. dyne, Arm. dum, down. Qu. Class Dn, No. 25. But the primitive orthography and signification are uncertain.]

  1. The fine soft feathers of fowls, particularly of the duck kind. The eider duck yields the best kind. Also, fine hair; as, the down of the chin.
  2. The pubescence of plants, a fine hairy substance.
  3. The pappus or little crown of certain seeds of plants; a fine feathery or hairy substance by which seeds are conveyed to a distance by the wind; as in dandelion and thistle.
  4. Any thing that soothes or mollifies. Thou bosom softness; down of all my cares. – Southern.

Return to page 186 of the letter “D”.