noun \ˈkwil\

: the hollow central part of a feather

: a large, stiff feather from the wing or tail of a bird

: a pen that is made from a feather

Full Definition of QUILL

a (1) :  a bobbin, spool, or spindle on which filling yarn is wound (2) :  a hollow shaft often surrounding another shaft and used in various mechanical devices
b :  a roll of dried bark <cinnamon quills>
a (1) :  the hollow horny shaft of a feather — see feather illustration (2) :  feather; especially :  one of the large stiff feathers of the wing or tail
b :  one of the hollow sharp spines of a porcupine or hedgehog
c :  3pen 3
:  something made from or resembling the quill of a feather; especially :  a pen for writing
:  a float for a fishing line

Origin of QUILL

Middle English quil hollow reed, bobbin; akin to Middle High German kil large feather
First Known Use: 15th century



Definition of QUILL

transitive verb
:  to pierce with quills
a :  to wind (thread or yarn) on a quill
b :  to make a series of small rounded ridges in (cloth)

First Known Use of QUILL

May 24, 2015
erudite Hear it
learned or pedantic
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears