broom [noun] [de bezem, de bezems; ‘bee-zum’]

The first "e" in "bezem" is pronounced a long "e", like in "feest". The second one is pronounced a bit like the "i" in the English "dirt", which we will call a silent "e" (for now). The act of cleaning with a broom is "bezemen". Now, if you wouldn’t know that "bezemen" is derived from "bezem", the normal Dutch vowel convention dictates the first "e" to be silent (as is usually the case with verbs starting with "be"), the second to be long (since it is followed by one consonant and one vowel) and the third "e" would be silent again, as it mostly is at the end of a multiple syllable word. However, "bezemen" is pronounced like "bezem" with an added "en", the latter having the expected silent "e". Ah, let’s just forget about it!

– "Mijn oma bezemde altijd het voetpad voor haar huis."
("My grandma used to broom the footpath in front of her house." In Dutch the English "used to (do something)" is often translated with the past tense and the word "altijd", which means "always".)

– "Er de bezem door halen": to make a clean sweep (of something). Literally: "to take the broom through something".

"Het wordt tijd dat we de bezem halen door overbodige overheidsregels."
("It is about time that we make a clean sweep of unnecessary government rules.")

Related words:
– "Bezemsteel": broomstick.
– "Heks": witch.

Read more about brooms at .