Brill’s New Pauly

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(195 words)

[German version]

(πούς/poús, 'foot', Lat. pes ). A poús is a Greek unit of length, taken from the proportions of the human body, of 4 παλαισταί (palaistaí; p alaistḗ ; 'hand width', Lat. palmus ) or 16 δάκτυλοι (dáktyloi; d áktylos ; 'finger width', Lat. digitus). Owing to differing regional calculations its length varied between c. 270 and 350 mm; an Attic foot was c. 300 mm. The poús is a subunit of larger units; 100 pódes correspond to a  πλέθρον ( pléthron ), 600 pódes to a  στάδιον ( st ádion ); cf. table.

Greek units of length and the relationships between them    

Unit of length    

δάκτυλος …

Cite this page
Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim), “Pous”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 28 September 2021 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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