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Idioms and Phrases with new broom sweeps clean, a

new broom sweeps clean, a

A fresh leader or administration gets rid of the old and brings in new ideas and personnel. For example, Once he takes office, you can be sure the President will replace most of the people on the staff—a new broom sweeps clean. This term was already in John Heywood's 1546 proverb collection, was used figuratively by Shakespeare, and exists in many other languages as well.

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.