1) The common and attractive shrub which provided the twigs used formerly to make a sweeping brush.

The meaning is not in question but the following testimony confirms the origin: 1671 he saw John Hanson of Lightcliffe in a broome close ... getting beesoms. It is a reminder that broom was seen as a valuable plant, used also for fuel: c.1570 kyd thy brome, Woodsome and in country remedies: c.1580 boyle lant and browme together and washe him sore therewith, Almondbury. Certain implements linked with ‘managing’ broom are: 1610 one broome sythe, Kirkstall

1665 had slaine a monster with one watch bill or broome hooke, Ecclesfield.

dates 1570 1580 1610 1671

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