plum·​age | \ˈplü-mij \

Definition of plumage 

: the feathers of a bird

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Other Words from plumage

plumaged \ ˈplü-​mijd \ adjective

Examples of plumage in a Sentence

The peacock has colorful plumage.

Recent Examples on the Web

Paleobiologists have been uncovering strong evidence of that dinosaurs including velociraptors and relatives of Tyrannosaurus rex had downy, colorful plumage since the mid-1990s. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "Five Ways Real Science Would Make the New Jurassic World So Much Better," 12 June 2018 After the war, Madame d’Ora began finding new and unlikely inspiration in Paris slaughterhouses, trading in the lace and plumage of her day job for blood and guts. J.s. Marcus, WSJ, "Faces of Old Vienna," 12 July 2018 The marvelous costumes, by Patricia Zipprodt, make dramatic juxtapositions of pale and black hues, especially on sleeves; when characters suddenly acquire lines of hanging red strands on their arms, like plumage, the impact is high voltage. New York Times, "Jerome Robbins, the Experimentalist," 10 May 2018 The birds have white plumage, often with black barring, and yellow eyes. Fox News, "Rare snowy owl found in famed New York City jail," 4 July 2018 Area songbirds are slowly but steadily molting into their breeding plumage. Taylor Piephoff, charlotteobserver, "Yellow-rumped warblers become brighter for breeding | Charlotte Observer," 12 Apr. 2018 Appearance-wise, the biggest inaccuracy in Jurassic Park‘s dinosaurs is the lack of feathers and colorful plumage, some knowledge about which has been gained in the years since the franchise debuted. Olivia B. Waxman, Time, "The Real Scientific History Behind the Jurassic Park Dinosaurs," 22 June 2018 Standing out is hardly a matter of preening or flaunting plumage. Rebecca Farley,, "The Bachelorette Season 14 Premiere Recap: Not Gonna Say It," 29 May 2018 In contrast, the male sports his white plumage, with a brilliant chocolate brown head, until quite late in the spring. John Schandelmeier, Anchorage Daily News, "While waiting for winter to become summer, outdoors lovers turn to beauty pageants," 23 Apr. 2018

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

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First Known Use of plumage

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for plumage

Middle English, from Middle French, from Old French, from plume feather — more at plume

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Last Updated

27 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for plumage

The first known use of plumage was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for plumage



English Language Learners Definition of plumage

: the feathers that cover the body of a bird


plum·​age | \ˈplü-mij \

Kids Definition of plumage

: the feathers of a bird

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More from Merriam-Webster on plumage

Spanish Central: Translation of plumage

Nglish: Translation of plumage for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about plumage

Comments on plumage

What made you want to look up plumage? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


playful or foolish behavior

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