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[kemp] /kɛmp/
a short, coarse, brittle fiber, used chiefly in the manufacture of carpets.
Origin of kemp2
1350-1400; Middle English kempe coarse (said of hair); akin to Old English cenep mustache, bristly object, Old Norse kampr mustache, cat's whiskers
Related forms
kempy, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for kempy
Historical Examples
  • "Dead wool" is nearly as bad as "kempy" wool, in which malformation of fibre has occurred.

  • While some breeds of sheep yield fine long wool of bright lustre, others have comparatively short-stapled, and "kempy" wool.

    Leather K. J. Adcock
British Dictionary definitions for kempy


a coarse hair or strand of hair, esp one in a fleece that resists dyeing
Derived Forms
kempy, adjective
Word Origin
C14: from Old Norse kampr beard, moustache
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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