In agriculture, a plowshare (US English) or ploughshare (international English) is a component of a plow (or plough). It is the cutting or leading edge of a moldboard which closely follows the coulter (one or more ground-breaking spikes) when plowing.
The plowshare itself is often a hardened blade dressed into an integral moldboard (by the blacksmith) so making a unified combination of plowshare and moldboard, the whole being responsible for entering the cleft in the earth (made by the coulter's first cutting-through) and turning the earth over.
In well-tilled terrain the plowshare may do duty without a preceding coulter.
In modern plows both coulter and plowshare are detachable for easy replacement when worn or broken.
Plowshares are often used in heraldry.
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