Uncertain. Possibly from *metură (compare Aromanian metură, Meglenitic m(i)etură, Istro-Romanian meture), from *metula (compare Albanian mettulë), from South Slavic *metla ‘broom’ (compare Serbo-Croatian метла (mètla), Slovene metla, Bulgarian метла (metla)). Another theory suggests possibly a substratum word, akin to Common Slavic metla. More likely ultimately based on Late Latin matta ("mat of rushes"), possibly through a root *mattula, and perhaps influenced by metere. Another possibility is the Latin changing genders in transitioning to Romanian, resulting in a *mat, with plural mături leading to the single mătură through false analogy. Has several near-cognates in Southern Italian dialects. Compare also Italian matta, Spanish mata.