1) A word for a kind of cloth.

First noted in 1541 in Lancashire, it features regularly much later: 1813 Accounts of pieces making ... one drab ... one mixture ... one olive ... one mottle, South Crosland. Possibly synonymous with drap a word for cloth: the verb ‘to drape’ could mean to weave in the early fifteenth century. It is thought that it referred to a hempen, linen or woollen cloth of a natural undyed colour but when used attributively came to be used as a colour, dull light brown for example. One possible earlier reference is: 1457 for ij clotthis off drabue Kollowes and j clothe whyt, York.

dates 1457 1813

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