List of Medieval Measures (under construction)

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Acre  

Unit of area, equal to 4840 square yards.

 

 

Bag

 

Obscure unit of volume, equal to 24 gallons.
 

Barleycorn

 

Unit of length. Three to the inch. A very old measure.
 

Barrel (beer)

 

Unit of volume, equal to 36 gallons, or 4 firkins. Still in use.
 

Barrel (wine)

 

Unit of volume, equal to 31.5 gallons.
 

Bucket

 

Obscure unit of volume, equal to 4 gallons.
 

Bushel

 

Unit of volume, equal to 8 gallons, or 4 pecks.
 

Butt

 

Unit of volume, usually for wine or beer. Can be 108 or 126 gallons, depending.
 

Cable

 

Unit of length, at sea. Defined as 1 tenth of a nautical mile.
 

Chain

 

Unit of length, equal to 22 yards, each chain made up of 100 links. There are 10 chains to the furlong.
 

Clove

 

Obscure unit of weight, equal to 7 pounds (Adp.)
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Drachms / Dram (fluid)

 

Unit of volume, equal to 60 minims. 8 fluid drachms to the fluid ounce. There are two spellings.
 

Dram (avoirdupois)

 

Unit of weight. 16 drams to the (Adp) ounce.
 

Dram (Troy)

 

Unit of weight. Equal to 60 grains. 8 drams to the (troy) ounce.
 

Ell

 

Unit of length. Very old. Most sources seem to quote 45 inches, but some quote 47", 48", 36" .
 

Fathom

 

Unit of depth, equal to 6 feet.
 

Firkin

 

Unit of volume, especially beer. Equals 9 gallons.
 

Foot

 

Unit of length. 12 inches. Multiples called feet, 3 feet to the yard.
 

Furlong

 

Unit of length, equal to 220 yards, or 10 chains. There are 8 furlongs to the mile. The name seems to derive from the length of a standard furrow, somehow.
 

Gallon

 

Unit of volume. Equal to 8 pints.
 

Gill

 

Unit of volume. Normally taken as a quarter of a pint. Some possible variations regionaly.
 

Grain

 

The basic unit of weight in the imperial system. There are 5760 grains to the Troy pound, and 7000 to the avoirdupois pound.
 

Hand

 

Unit of length in buildings, and  height in horses, equal to 4 inches.
 

Hogshead

 

Unit of volume. 63 gallons until 1824. Now only 52.5 gallons
 

Hundredweight

 

Unit of weight, equal to 8 stones. 20 hundredweight to a ton. This unit is commonly abbreviated to 'cwt'.
 

Inch

 

Very basic unit of length. 12 to the foot. Reputed to come from the length of a big toe.
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Kilderkin

 

Obscure unit of volume, equal to 18 gallons.
 

Knot

 

Unit of speed or velocity, equal to 1 nautical mile per hour.
 

Last

 

Very obscure unit of volume - equal to 640 gallons.
 
 

League

 

Unit of length. Equal to 3 miles, so a league at sea is different to a league on land.
 

Link

 

Unit of length, equal to 7.92 Inches there being 100 links to a chain.
 

Mile (statute)

 

Unit of length, equal to 1760 yards, or 8 furlongs.
 

Mile (nautical)

 

Unit of length, normally at sea or in the air. Originally, the Admiralty fixed it at 6080 feet.
 

Minim

 

Unit of volume. 60 minims to the fluid ounce.
 

Nail

 

Obscure unit of length, equal to 2 and a quarter inches.
 

Noggin

 

Unit of volume  maybe a regional thing. 4 pints same as the gill.
 

Ounce - avoirdupois

 

Unit of weigh, equal to 437.5 grains. 16 drams to the ounce, 16 ounces to the pound.
 

Ounce - fluid

 

Unit of volume, equal to 8 fluid drachms. 20 fluid ounces = 1 pint.
 

Ounce - troy

 

Unit of weight, equal to 480 grains, or 24 scruples. or 20 pennyweights or 8 drams. 12 ounces to the pound. Used for weighing precious metals and as an apothecaries measure.
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Pace

 

Obscure unit of length. Equal to 2.5 feet.
 

Palm

 

Obscure unit of length. Equal to 3 inches.
 

Peck

 

Unit of volume, equal to 2 gallons.
 

Pennyweight

 

Unit of weight, equal to 24 grains. There are 20 to the Troy ounce.
 

Perch

 

Old unit of length - same as rod and pole. 16.5 feet.
 

Pint

 

Unit of volume. There are 20 fluid ounces to the pint, and 8 pints to the gallon.
 

Pole

 

Old unit of length - same as rod and perch. 16.5 feet.
 

Pound - avoirdupois

 

Unit of weight, equal to 7000 grains, or 16 avoirdupois ounces. 14 pounds = 1 stone.
 

Pound - troy

 

Unit of weight, equal to 5760 grains, or 12 troy ounces. Used for weighing precious metals, and as an apothecaries measure.
 

Puncheon

 

Obscure unit of volume  equal to 70 gallons.
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Quart

 

Unit of volume, equal to 2 pints. 4 quarts = 1 gallon.
 

Quarter

 

Unit of weight, equal to 2 stones. 4 quarters = 1 hundredweight. And a Unit of Volume equal to 64 gallons.
 

Rod

 

Unit of length; equal to 16.5 feet.
 

Rood

 

Unit of area; an area of 1 furlong long by 1 rod wide, or 1210 square yards. There are 4 roods to the acre.
 

Rope

 

Obscure unit of length equal to 20 feet.
 

Sack

 

Obscure unit of weight, equal to 26 stones.
 

Scruple

 

Unit of weight. Equals 20 grains. 3 to the Troy dram.
 

Scruple (fluid).

 

Unit of volume. Equals 20 minims.
 

Seam

 

Obscure unit of volume, equal to 64 gallons.
 

Slug

 

Strange unit of weight - equal to 32.174 pounds (av.)
 

Span

 

Obscure unit of length equal to 9 inches.
 

Stone

 

Unit of weight, equal to 14 pounds (av.). 8 stones = 1 hundredweight.
 

Tod

 

An obscure unit of weight equal to 2 stones. 4 quarters = 1 hundredweight.
 

Ton

 

Unit of weight, equals 20 hundredweight, or 2240 pounds.
 

Yard

 

Fundamental unit of length. 36 inches (or 3 feet) to the yard, 1760 yards to the statute mile.
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