clew (n.) Look up clew at Dictionary.com
"ball of thread or yarn," northern English and Scottish relic of Old English cliewen "sphere, ball, skein, ball of thread or yarn," probably from West Germanic *kleuwin (cognates: Old Saxon cleuwin, Dutch kluwen), from Proto-Germanic *kliwjo-, from PIE *gleu- "gather into a mass, conglomerate" (see clay).