Brill’s New Pauly

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(222 words)

[German version]

In Antiquity only beam (or balance) scales (σταθμός/stathmós, τάλαντον/tálanton; Latin libra, also statera, trutina) were known; they are first documented for Egypt (Old Kingdom, 5th dynasty) and were used in Greece in the Archaic period. Black Figure vase pictures (Arcesilas Bowl, Paris, CM; amphora by the Taleides Painter, New York, MMA, cf. Beazley, ABV, 174,1) show equal-armed beam scales with two bowls for the goods being weighed and for graded weights. Already in Homer's epic poems scale…

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M.PU., “Scales”, 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 18 September 2021 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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