1

featherbed

adjective feath·er·bed \ ˈfe-t͟hər-ˌbed \

Definition of featherbed

: calling for, sanctioning, or resulting from featherbedding
  • a featherbed rule
  • a featherbed job

First Known Use of featherbed

1938

in the meaning defined above

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2

featherbed

verb

Definition of featherbed

featherbedded; featherbedding; featherbeds
1 a : to require that more workers be hired than are needed
b : to limit production under a featherbed rule
2 : to do featherbed work or put in time under a featherbed rule
1 : to bring under a featherbed rule
2 : to assist (something, such as an industry) by government aid

First Known Use of featherbed

1949

in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

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feather bed

noun

Definition of feather bed

1 : a feather mattress
2 : a bed having a feather mattress

Recent Examples of feather bed from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'feather bed.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of feather bed

before 12th century

in the meaning defined at sense 1

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FEATHERBED Defined for English Language Learners

feather bed

Definition of feather bed for English Language Learners

  • : a bed with a mattress that is filled with feathers


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