1) Finely-sifted soil.

Charcoal burners covered the wood that was to be ‘coaled’ in a way that excluded the air and prevented combustion. This might be done with sods, grass, bracken and the like but one component was finely-sifted soil, called ‘dust’ in wood leases: 1672 libertye to … get sods Turfes & dust in the said wood,/i>, Tong

1763 to make Charcoal pitts & Burn the said cordwood & to get Dust & Cover for the said Charcoal pitts in the most proper part of the said Woods, Esholt.

places Esholt Tong
dates 1672 1763

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2) The small particles separated from grain in the milling process.

1320-1 Pro xvij bus. de dust’ emptis de bovaria, Bolton Priory

1574 an arke called a dustarke, Hipperholme

1621 One olde duste arke 6s 8d

in duste 3s 4d, Slaidburn

1684 one trough to put dust in ... one dustin sieve, Whitley

1739 dusting sieves, Riddlesden.

dates 1320-1321 1574 1621 1684 1739

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Photo by Kreuzschnabel CC BY-SA 3.0