The feathers chiefly used in this country, are those of geese, from which animals they are plucked three, four, and even five times in the course of one year : thus, in cold Seasons, many of these birds fall victims to that barbarous cus-tom. - The feathers obtained from the county of Somerset are esteemed to be the best, as those brought from Ireland are reputed to be the worst.
Great quantities of goose and other feathers are annually imported from the North of Europe; which, however, are insufficient for the demand': hence poulterers dispose of vast numbers of the feathers of cocks and hens, and also of ducks and turkies; all of which are much inferior to those of geese.
The best method of curing feathers is, to expose them to the sua in a room; and as soon as they are thoroughly dry, to put them loosely in bags, in which they should be well beaten, in order to cleanse them from all dust and filth.
Feathers are chiefly used for the stuffing of beds, which are certainly less wholesome than wool or horse-hair mattresses, and lend greatly to relax and enervate the human body. Within the last two or three years, they have been ma-nufactured into hats; a mode of employing them, far preferable to that we have just mentioned. - See Plume.