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Cardo, kardo

(377 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] The point around which something rotates; technical term in Roman land-surveying ( limitatio); within the rectangular grid of the survey, it refers to the horizontal lines ( limites). Originally, it was a cosmological term, referring to the pivotal point of the uni- verse; later, it was used to describe the north-south axis -- in contrast with the east-west axis of the   decumanus , which divided the world into two halves, one of sunrise and one of sunset, or one of day and one of night [1. 147]. In gromatic theory ( Surve…

Spithame

(112 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] (σπιθαμή/ spithamḗ, handspan). Greek unit of length taken from the proportions of the human body, extending between the tips of the thumb and little finger, equal to 1/2 pchys , i.e. 3 palaistaí ( palaist ) or 12 dáktyloi dáktylos [1]. Depending on the underlying foot size ( pous ), its length was c. 20-26 cm. According to a metrological relief from the island Salamis [1], the Attic spithame was 24,3 cm long. There was no unit of length corresponding to spithame in the Roman measurement system. Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) Bibliography 1 K. W. Beinhauer (ed.),…

Groma

(227 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] (Greek γνώμων; gnṓmōn). Name of the Roman  surveyors' device for determining straight lines and right angles when surveying a terrain. It consists of a pole about the height of a man ( ferramentum) and a rotatable cross of four horizontal rods ( stella) attached to it at right angles. On the four ends were attached plumb-lines ( perpendicula) almost down to the ground. The plumb attached to the centre point of the rotary cross ( umbilicus soli) was aligned above the measurement point by a slight slanting of the ferramentum [3]. The application is known through Heron o…

Kyathos

(159 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] [1] See Pottery, shapes and types of see  Pottery, shapes and types of Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) [German version] [2] Measure of volume for fluids (κύαθος/ kýathos, Latin cyathus; 'cup'); Graeco-Latin term for a measure of volume for fluids amounting to 1/6 kotyle [2] or 1/72 chous [1] in the Greek system [1. 104] and 1/12 sextarius or 1/576 amphora [2] [1. 117] in the Roman, equivalent to approx. 0.045 l. In the Roman system, the cyathus was also a unit of measure for the ladle used to serve wine from the krater into the drinking-cup [1. 118], the volume of …

Kapetis

(56 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] (καπέτις; kapétis). Persian measure of volume for dry goods; it corresponds to 1/48 of an artabe, therefore to 1 Attic choinix and c. 1.1 l [1. 479-482]. Xenophon also mentions a καπίθη/ kapíthē, which corresponded to 2 Attic choinikes (Xen. An. 1,5,6). Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) Bibliography 1 F. Hultsch, Griech. und röm. Metrologie, 21882.

Urna

(59 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] Roman fluid measure  (Measures of volume); corresponding to half an amphora [2] and hence 4 congii or 24 sextarii. In modern terms approximately 13·1 litres. As an expression of quantity the u. often appears in the context of viticulture (Colum. 3,3,2; 3,3,10; 3,9,2 f.). Sextarius (with table) Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) Bibliography F. Hultsch, Griechische und römische Metrologie, 21882, 116 ff.

Hekteus

(177 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] (ἑκτεύς; hekteús). Greek term for a dry measure, mainly for grain, in volume 1/6   medimnos , corresponding to 8   choinikes and 32   kotylai . According to [1], the hekteus depends on the region and amounts to 8.75 litres (Attica) or 12.12 litres (Aegina) [1. 504-506]. In the Ptolemaic period the hekteus corresponded to 13.13 litres [1. 623]. According to [3], the Attic hekteus passed through the stages of 4.56, 5.84, 6.56, 8.75, 10.21, 10.94 litres, the Aeginetan-Lakonian hekteus corresponded to 9.12 litres. According to [6], the Solonian hekteus amounted to 8…

Semuncia

(188 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] Roman unit, 1/24 of a larger whole. As a weight a semuncia corresponds to half an ounce/ uncia ( “semuncia, quod dimidia pars unciae”, Varro Ling. 5,171) and hence to 1/24 of a libra [1] = 13·64 g (value indicator S or Σ), as a measure of length to 1/24 of a pes = 12·3 mm, as a unit of square measure to 1/24 of a iugerum = 105.1 m2, as a measure of time to 1/24 of an hour, as an interest rate to 1/24 of a centesima (1 % a month, 12 % a year) = 1/2 %. In the late Roman and Byzantine system of weights a semuncia corresponds to 12 scripula (value indicator  XII, IB; s cripulum ) or 3 solidi

Hin

(129 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] Egyptian hollow measure for fluids and dry materials of 1/10 ḥqt ( hekat) in the Old Kingdom or 1/40 jpt ( oipe) in the New Kingdom, corresponding to c. 0.48 l [3. 1201], with minimal differences upwards [1. 1644] and downwards [2. 1152]. The hin is the only remaining unit from the Demotic period, corroborated by extant measuring vessels. Its relations to the  artabe and  choinix are contentious [3. 1210]. Measuring vessels based on the hin have also been handed down from the New Kingdom: mḥt = 1 hin, pg = 1/4 hin, mnḏqt = 50 hin, which seem, however, not to have h…

Pes

(331 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] The pes ('foot') was the basic unit of Roman measures of length (corresponding to 296·2 mm). According to Vitruvius (Vitr. 3,1,5) it, its subdivisions digitus ('fingerwidth'; Greek δάκτυλος/ dáktylos = 1/16 foot) and palmus ('handwidth'; Greek παλαιστή/ palaistḗ = 1/4 foot) and its sesquimultiple cubitus ('cubit'; Greek πῆχυς/ pȇchys ) draw on the proportions of the human body. Following the duodecimal system usual in coinage, the pes was also subdivided into 12 unciae ('inches'). Numerous surviving folding foot-long rules of bronze, bone or brass ge…

Saton

(65 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] (σάτον/ sáton, Latin satum; seā) is a Hebrew capacity measure for liquids and dry goods. Its volume varies in time and place between 20 and 24 loghim (Log; Hin; Sextarius) and corresponds to roughly 9.1-13.1 litres. During the Roman period the s. was equated with 1 1/2 Italic modii ( Modius [3]) (Jos. Ant. Iud. 9,85; less often 1 1/4 modii). Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)

Iugerum

(232 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] Latin name for a square measure comprising a rectangle of 120 × 240 feet = 35,52 × 71,04 m = 2523 m2 = 1/4 ha, made up of two squares ( Actus [2]) [1. 84f.; 3. 9f.], according to Plin. HN 18,3,9 the area which could be ploughed in one day by one yoke of oxen, in a figurative sense a ‘day's work’. Division according to the duodecimal system into 2 actus, 12 unciae, 288   scripula , with 1 scripulum corresponding to 100 square feet. A full calculation of the sub-units is given by Columella 5,1,4-5,2,10 [2. 627]. Varro, Rust. 1,10,2 mentions   heredium (2 I.), centuria (200 I.) and   sa…

Sicilicus

(154 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] (also quartuncia = 1/4 uncia ; Greek σικελικός/ sikelikós). Roman unit of 1/48 of a larger whole. As a weight the sicilicus corresponds to 1/48 of a libra [1] = 6,82 g and hence 11/2 sextulae , as a length 1/48 of a pes = c. 6 mm, as an area 1/48 of a iugerum = 52,5 m2, as a time unit 1/48 of an hora (hour) = 11/4 minutes (Plin. HN 18,324). In the imperial monetary system of the Greek East the sicilicus was synonymous with the assárion . In the late Roman and Byzantine systems of weights the sicilicus was equivalent to 6 scripula (value mark VI or Ε; scripulum ) or 11/2 solidi (Solidus). I…

Parasanges

(75 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] (παρασάγγης; parasángēs). Babylonian-Assyrian and Persian measurement of length, equal to 30 stadia (cf. Hdt. 2,6,3; Xen. An. 5,5,4) or 10,800 royal cubits, the equivalent of c. 5.7km. According to Herodotus, roads as well as those areas of land included in the tax land register were measured in parasangs in the kingdoms of the Ancient Near East (Hdt. 6,42,2). Stadion [1] Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) Bibliography F. Hultsch, Griechische und römische Metrologie, 21882, 476ff.

Xestes

(129 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] (ξέστης/ xéstēs). From the turn from the 3rd cent. BC to the 2nd onwards, the term xestes is recorded as a Greek term for the Roman sextarius , a fluid and dry measure of capacity (=  c. 0.546 l) corresponding to 1/48 of an amphora [2], 1/6 of a congius or 2 heminae , 4 quartarii and 12 cyathi . In late Antiquity Egypt, 72 xestai/ sextarii corresponded to an artábē, which was subdivided into 48 choínikes. Hence a choínix can be equated with 11/2 xestai/ sextarii. Sextarius (with table) Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) Bibliography 1 H. Chantraine, s. v. X., RE 9 A, 210…

Multiplum

(382 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] Technical term used in ancient numismatics to describe multiples of a particular denomination or of a larger format minting from precious or non-precious metals. Frequently multiplum is used erroneously as a synonym for the term 'medallion'; the latter, however, excludes any function as a means of payment, whereas multipla are a fundamental part by weight of the current coin system. In the Greek sphere, the oktadrachmon and the dekadrachmon can be spoken of as multipla, as their minting can as a rule be seen in connection with particular events. In Rome we encounter the b…

Ulna

(111 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] (ὠλένη/ ōlénē, literally 'elbow'). A measure of length based on one of the proportions of the human body which appears primarily in poetry (cf. e.g. Hor. Epod. 4,8; Verg. Ecl. 4,105; Verg. G. 3,355); its extent is inconsistent. Whereas the term is occasionally used as a synonym for cubitus (ell = 11/2 feet), it is also found in Plinius [1] the Elder as a translation of ὄργυια/ órgyia (fathom = 6 feet; cf. Plin. HN 36,87 with Hdt. 2,148,7), the length a human can span with both arms (Plin. HN 16,133; 16,202). Use as an official measure of length is improbable. Schulzki, Heinz-Jo…

Quartarius

(62 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] (Greek τέταρτον/ tétarton, 'quarter'). The quartarius was a Roman measure of volume for liquids and dry goods at 1/4 sextarius , corresponding to 2 acetabula or 3 cyathi. Standardized to water, the quartarius is equivalent to 0.136 l. Acetabulum; Cyathus Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) Bibliography 1 H. Chantraine, s. v. q., RE 24, 830-834 2 F. Hultsch, Griechische und römische Metrologie, 21882, s. Index.

Kotyle

(109 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] [1] see Gefäße, Gefäßformen/-typen see Skyphos Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) [German version] [2] Dry measure (κοτύλη/ kotýlē; Latin cotula, cotyla). Graeco-Latin name for a measure of volume for liquids equalling 1/144 metretes or 1/12 chous [1], the equivalent of 4 oxybapha or 6 kyathoi. Also the name for a dry measure of a volume of 1/192 medimnos or 1/32 hekteus . According to Hultsch, conversion is c. 0.27 l [1. 108, 703, table X], according to Viedebantt c. 0.22 l [2. 1547f.] with fairly large regional variations. Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) Bibliogr…

Passus

(113 words)

Author(s): Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim)
[German version] Roman measure of length (two paces; Greek βῆμα διπλοῦν/ bêma diploûn) of 5 feet, corresponding to c. 1.48 m. The passus formed the basic unit for measuring mileage, the Roman road surveys providing distance data on the basis of 1,000 times the passus, i.e. the mille passus (plural milia passuum, abbreviated as MP and corresponding to 1.48 km) (cf. for instance ILS 23: milestone of Polla). In military terminology, milia passuum was also used by way of asserting feats of marching (cf. for instance Veg. Mil. 1,27). Milestones Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) Bibliograp…
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