besom (n.) O.E. besma "bundle of twigs" (used as a broom or a flail), from W.Gmc. *besmon (Cf. O.Fris. besma, O.S. besmo, O.H.G. besmo, Ger. Besen, Du. bezem), of unknown origin. Perhaps "something bound or twisted," from PIE *bheidh-.

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

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  • Besom — Be som, n. [OE. besme, besum, AS. besma; akin to D. bezem, OHG pesamo, G. besen; of uncertain origin.] A brush of twigs for sweeping; a broom; anything which sweeps away or destroys. [Archaic or Fig.] [1913 Webster] I will sweep it with the besom …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Besom — Be som, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Besomed}.] To sweep, as with a besom. [Archaic or Poetic] Cowper. [1913 Webster] Rolls back all Greece, and besoms wide the plain. Barlow. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • besom — ► NOUN 1) a broom made of twigs tied round a stick. 2) derogatory, chiefly Scottish & N. English a woman or girl. ORIGIN Old English …   English terms dictionary

  • besom — [bē′zəm] n. [ME besme < OE besma, broom, rod < WGmc * besman > Ger besen] a broom, esp. one made of twigs tied to a handle …   English World dictionary

  • besom — I Scottish Vernacular Dictionary Originally a broomstick, now means a cheeky hussy, loose woman, or hing oot. Example: Yi gallus wee besom, eh ll skelp yir erse! II Mawdesley Glossary 1. a brush made from small twigs. 2. an old woman o ill repute …   English dialects glossary

  • besom — noun Etymology: Middle English beseme, from Old English besma; akin to Old High German besmo broom Date: before 12th century broom 2; especially one made of twigs …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • besom — /bee zeuhm/, n. 1. a broom, esp. one of brush or twigs. 2. broom (def. 2). [bef. 1000; ME besem, OE bes(e)ma; c. D bezem, G Besen] * * * …   Universalium

  • besom — 1. noun A broom made from a bundle of twigs tied onto a shaft. 2. verb To sweep. Now, in her iceberg white, holily laundered crinoline nightgown, under virtuous polar sheets, in her spruced and scoured dust defying bedroom in trig and trim Bay… …   Wiktionary

  • Besom —    The rendering of a Hebrew word meaning sweeper, occurs only in Isa. 14:23, of the sweeping away, the utter ruin, of Babylon …   Easton's Bible Dictionary

  • besom — be·som || biːzÉ™m n. broom made of twigs …   English contemporary dictionary