Definition of broadcloth in English:



mass noun
  • Clothing fabric of fine twilled wool or worsted, or plain-woven cotton.

    as modifier ‘his green broadcloth jacket’
    count noun ‘the manufacture of broadcloths’
    • ‘Between 1620 and 1700 sailings averaged eight ships a year, mainly laden with broadcloth, iron and silver on the outward half of the eighteen-month round trip, and with pepper on the return journey.’
    • ‘The Border region's involvement led to the creation of a new fashion of fancy woolens and tweeds, which were preferred by consumers over broadcloth.’
    • ‘Between 1475 and 1550 existing markets for English broadcloths and other woollens grew rapidly, because the importing regions became more prosperous and had greater purchasing power.’
    • ‘London exported more wool broadcloth than Exeter, Southampton, Hull and Bristol added together.’
    • ‘Ben had risen before her and was already shaved and resplendently dressed in silver grey broadcloth with matching waistcoat, white shirt and black ribbon tie.’
    • ‘They worked at the many machines powered by turning waterwheels in the factory basements, producing sheetings, calicoes, broadcloths, carpets, and rugs for a growing market.’
    • ‘By 1830 they seem to have other occupations, and Josiah was manufacturing broadcloth.’
    • ‘The dress was a thick black cotton, and the tunic a deep scarlet broadcloth.’
    • ‘Still, Reece is a poet and a clerk, as much at home now with pinpoint and broadcloth as with the meter and rhyme.’
    • ‘Briton John Russell wrote that Hirschfeld ‘can make us tell tweed from broadcloth, mink from sable, and a clip-on bow tie from one that is made by hand.’’
    • ‘She looked up from the blue broadcloth she had spotted out of the corner of her eye.’
    • ‘He was richly dressed in the finest of broadcloth and the whitest of linen, with a great gold watch-chain, and studs and spectacles of the same precious material.’
    • ‘Described as ‘a model of affability and dignity… remarkable for his fine form and manly beauty,’ he was something of a dandy whose favorite overcoat was made of sable skins lined with scarlet broadcloth.’
    • ‘Outdoors, the Indian Traders Market occupied a circus-type tent where more than 200 merchants sold everything from broadcloth to Zuni fetishes.’
    • ‘Rolled-hem feet are designed for fine to mediumweight fabrics such as cotton batiste, broadcloth and handkerchief linen.’
    • ‘Once the shirt went away, all of the mills that made fine broadcloth shirting fabric disappeared.’


Late Middle English: originally denoting cloth made 72 inches wide, as opposed to ‘strait’ cloth, 36 inches wide. The term now implies quality rather than width.