clew

1) A ball of yarn or thread.

1599 fyve clewes of yearne, Rawmarsh

1686 one clew of yarn which her master gave her to make a pair of stockins on, Slaithwaite

1812 a clue of white yarn, Pontefract.

dates 1599 1686 1812

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2) An alternative spelling of ‘clow’.

1748 the clews of the fish hecks were then down, West Riding

1759-60 so draw your clew has [as] you pull out a drawer in a dreser, Wakefield.

dates 1748 1759-1760

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Photo by Kreuzschnabel CC BY-SA 3.0