quilt packing


New Member
Brazil portuguese
Hi, I am a Brazilian translator and this is my first time here.
Just finished translating Toni Morrison's Beloved and would like to know if someone might help me with this:
"In fact, Ohio had been callong itself a state only seventy years when first one brother and then the next stuffed quilt packing into his hat, snatched up his shoes, and crept away..."
I don't understand what the stiffed quilt packing is.
Would someone know?
Thank you.
José Rubens
  • The MightyQ

    Senior Member
    English, Canada
    I think you will have to wait for an Ohio native for a definitive answer.
    But it suggests to me that the brothers crept away in wintertime, when stuffing anything with insulating properties into their hats would have been necessary.
    I could be way off the mark.


    Senior Member
    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    "Quilt packing" is almost surely the filler inside a quilt. My needleworker's intuition suggests that it is an earlier version of what you see here. :)


    New Member
    Brazil portuguese
    I have finally figured out what this quilt packing means here.
    Further in the text the author mentions a negro's "wooly hair".
    "Quilt packing" is an image for the boys hair, woolly as quilt packing, which they stuff into their hats.
    Thank you for all the replys.


    Senior Member
    England, English UK
    Sorry to be so negative, but:-

    The reference to "stuffed quilt packing" is certainly a reference to the wooly filling made from old clothes and rags and used when packing the empty spaces in a box. "Quilted" means that the stuffing has been stiched into sheets (like a bed quilt or bed spread).

    The reference to the (negro) boys wooly hair is definitely unrelated, such hair would probably only be referred to as wooly because the children's dolls of that time would have had the hair on them manufactured in black wool.

    The context indicates that the men were trying to keep warm and found the quilt remanants as a way of doing so.

    Sorry this is so long, I hope it helps!