Middle English Dictionary Entry

brāke(n n.
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Entry Info

Definitions (Senses and Subsenses)

(a) Any one of a variety of ferns [see quot. ?a1450 Agnus Castus]; bracken; (b) ~ bush, a fern thicket; (c) brake of fern, fern-brake, a thicket of fern; (d) in place names [see A. H. Smith PNElem. 1.47].

Supplemental Materials (draft)

Note: Need quots. for sense (d).--per MJW.
Note: Rev.Monk Eynsham quot. added to sense (c) for spelling. It is not clear, however, how many words have been combined in this entry. OED treats the evidence under three entries: bracken n. ('bracken, fern'), brack n.(4) (' = bracken'), and brake n.(2) ('thicket'). Sense (c) especially ('thicket') of the MED entry might justifiably be regarded as a different word, for which cp. the Low German phrase 'busk unde brake' (Rev.Monk Eynsham: 'bocis and brackys'; cited by OED s.v. brake n.(2)).