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Re: a query

From:Raymond Brown <ray.brown@...>
Date:Sunday, October 1, 2000, 18:34
At 8:09 am +0100 1/10/00, Raymond Brown wrote:
>SQUARE MEASURE >The basic unit was the _iu:gerum_ (an interesting word in that, tho [snip] >UK). It was 28 000 square Roman feet, i.e. 240 pedes * 120 pedes. > >Smaller areas were measured in _pede:s quadra:ti:_ (square feet).
OOps! On checking, I find that the _iu:gerum_ was also divided into 12 _u:nciae_. Thus an uncia of land was 2400 square Roman feet. _pede:s quadra:ti:_ would be used for the sort of areas that are traditionally measured in square feet or square yards now. [snip]
> >Hope this helps. I'm afraid I don't recall the measures of capacity
Got it now :) CAPACITY The basic unit is, of course, the 'pint' :) What's more it was only slightly less than the Imperial pint - the Roman one was about 565 ml, and the Imperial pint is 568 ml or 20 fluid ounces; the American pint (16 fluid ounces) is 551 ml. The Roman pint was divided into 12, but the unit this time was not called unciae, but _cyathi:_ . however, it wasn't quite so neat because as well borrowing the Greek _cyathus_, they also borrowed the _he:mina_, i.e. "half pint". Thus: 6 cyathi: = 1 he:mina 2 he:minae = 1 sexta:rius (pint) That was the same for both liquid & dry measure; what happened after that differed, thus: LIQUID MEASURE DRY MEASURE 6 sexta:rii: = 1 congius 16 sextarii: = 1 modius 8 congii: = 1 amphora 6 modii: = 1 medimnus (In the above all words ending in -a are 1st. fem, and those in -us 2nd. masc. _Modius_ and _medimnus_ were sometimes treated as neuter, i.e. _modium_ and _medimnum Ray. ========================================= A mind which thinks at its own expense will always interfere with language. [J.G. Hamann 1760] =========================================