Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > White Feather.

 White Elephant.White Friars. 
E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
White Feather.
To show the white feather. To show cowardice. No gamecock has a white feather. A white feather indicates a cross-breed in birds.   1
   Showing the white feather. Some years ago a bloody war was raging between the Indians and settlers of the backwoods of North America. A Quaker, who refused to fly, saw ne day a horde of savages rushing down towards his house. He set food before them, and when they had eaten the chief fastened a white feather over the door as a badge of friendship and peace. Though many bands passed that house, none ever violated the covenant by injuring its inmates or property.   2

 White Elephant.White Friars. 


Shakespeare · Bible · Strunk · Anatomy · Nonfiction · Quotations · Reference · Fiction · Poetry
© 1993–2015 · [Top 150] · Subjects · Titles · Authors · World Lit.