Botany, phloem.
Also called bast fiber. any of several strong, woody fibers, as flax, hemp, ramie, or jute, obtained from phloem tissue and used in the manufacture of woven goods and cordage.

before 900; Middle English; Old English bæst; cognate with Dutch, German, Old Norse bast; perhaps ultimately cognate with Latin fascis bundle. See bass3 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
bast (bæst)
1.  Also called: bass fibrous material obtained from the phloem of jute, hemp, flax, lime, etc, used for making rope, matting, etc
2.  botany another name for phloem
[Old English bæst; related to Old Norse, Middle High German bast]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

"inner bark of the linden tree," O.E. bæst, a general Gmc. word (cf. O.N., O.S., M.Du., O.H.G., Ger. bast), of unknown origin.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Even though it must take bast amounts of processing and information for a conscience to arise.
Processability of flax plant stalks into functional bast fibers.
Viscoelastic properties of kenaf bast fiber in relation to stem age.
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