# Search

## Kypros

(2,178 words)

(Cyprus) [German version] [1] [German version] I. Neolithic I (Khirokitia culture, c. 7000-6000 BC) and II (Sotira culture, 4500-3900 BC) The settlement of K. (for the history see also Cyprus II) began relatively late and differed significantly from that of the neighbouring regions Anatolia, Syria, and Palestine. While small groups of hunter-gatherers there gradually became settled farmers around 9000/8000 BC, the earliest inhabitants of the island of K. were, from the beginning, farmers, herders, hunters, and fis…

## Sextula

(144 words)

[German version] ('A small sixth' = 1/6 of the u ncia ; cf. Varro Ling. 5,171: aeris minima pars sextula, quod sexta pars unciae). Roman unit of measurement constituting 1/72 of a bigger whole. As unit of weight, the sextula corresponds to 1/72 of the libra [1] = 4,55 g, as unit of area to 1/72 of the iugerum = 35 m2. In the Late Roman and Byzantine weight system, the sextula was equivalent to four scripula (value symbol Δ; scripulum ) or one solidus (value symbol N). Sextula also appears as part of the declared weight on silver crockery from Late Antiquity (CIL XIII 3100,5; 10026,25; 29a). Schulzki…

## Iugerum

(232 words)

[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…

(128 words)

[German version] (κάδος; kádos, Latin cadus, ‘jug, pail’). Graeco-Latin term for a vessel, usually earthen, for storing fluids. In Athens, kados was also the term for the biggest unit in the measure of volume, synonymous with metretes, equal to 39,4 l. [1. 101-102; 703 table X A]. In Rome, kados was the measure of Greek wines, as opposed to Italian wines, which were measured by the amphora [2]. In Roman literature, kados is a technical term for wine jug, often used metonymically for wine by the poets of the Augustan period. Records show that satirists also used the…

## Hekte

(190 words)

[German version] (ἕκτη; héktē). Greek term for the sixth of a unit. Nominal term for the electrum staters ( Stater) of Cyzicus (inscription IG I2 199; 203), Mytilene and Phocaea made of a gold-silver alloy. In addition, series from the 7th to the 5th cents. BC have been found from indeterminate minting sites of Asia Minor that were launched according to the Milesian, Phocaean and Samian-Euboean standard [3. 7-17]. The coins of Mytilene and Phocaea made in the gold-silver ratio of 1:131/3 [1. 55] as joint mintings according to the coinage agreement of 394 BC [2. 29] corresp…

## Hemina

(166 words)

[German version] ( emina). Latin term adopted from the Greek (ἡμίνα; hēmína) for a measure of volume for liquids and dry goods in the volume of 1/96  amphora, 1/32  modius, 1/2  sextarius, corresponding to 2  quartarii, 4  acetabula, 6  cyathi. It corresponds to 0.273 l; calibrated in relation to water, there are 10 ounces to 1 hemina. Widespread as a measurement for drinks - comparable with ‘half a pint’ in comedy and in other writers [1. 2602-2604] as well as a quantity indicator in recipes in Caelius Apicius [2. 99-100; 3. 143]. As an oil measure, hemina describes by the name λιτραῖ…

## Konche

(81 words)

[German version] (κόγχη; kónchē; Lat. concha; ‘mussel, small bowl’); technical term for a minimum measure, used mostly by doctors to specify a quantity of ointment. In this system, the ‘large konche’ (μεγάλη κόγχη/ megálē konche) is equivalent to an oxybaphon and corresponds to c. 0.06 l, the ‘small konche’ (ἐλάττων κόγχη, eláttōn konche) equivalent to 1/2 cyathus [2] and corresponds to c. 0.02 l [1. 636]. Measures of volume Schulzki, Heinz-Joachim (Mannheim) Bibliography 1 F. Hultsch, Griechische und römische Metrologie, 21882.

## Pes

(331 words)

[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…

(1,137 words)

(στάδιον; stádion). [German version] [1] Unit of length (Doric σπάδιον/ spádion). Greek unit of length equal to 6 pléthra ( pléthron ; cf. Hdt. 2,149,3) or 600 pous (foot). Depending on the underlying standard of the foot ( pous), this corresponds to a length of c. 162-210 m; the Attic stadion is equal to 186 m. The stadion for the race at Olympia had a length of 192.3 m, at Delphi 177.3 m, at Epidaurus 181.3 m, and at Athens 184.3 m. 8  stadia correspond approximately to 1 Roman mile ( mille passus) of 1500 m. In Greek literature, larger distances are generally indicated in stádia; if other…

## Hekteus

(177 words)

[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…

## Urna

(59 words)

[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.

## Ponderarium

(384 words)

[German version] was the Latin name for the office of weights and measures. The calibration of scales and weights and of measuring-vessels for fluids and dry goods took place, both in Greece and the Roman Empire in a building in the vicinity of the marketplace, in which were kept the town's official weights and a block of stone sunk with depressions of various depths and fitted with removable metal inserts for the standardization of measures of volume. There is a copy of such a 'measuring table' ( mensa ponderaria, Greek σήκωμα/ sḗkōma) with cavities of different sizes in the Forum of…

## Xestes

(129 words)

[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…

## Parasanges

(75 words)

[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.

## Mensor

(294 words)

[German version] was the Latin term for technical experts who carried out measurements in the broadest sense of the word. Mensores agrarii ( agrimensores, geometrae, gromatici, surveyor) were responsible in both civil and military domains for marking out surfaces, laying out roads, aqueducts, and building camps. This activity gained great importance during the 1st cent. BC, as a consequence of the allocation of land to veterans. According to the representation on the gravestone of L. Aebutius Faustus (CIL V 6786 = ILS 7736), their main instrument was the groma. Mensores aedificiorum

## Sicilicus

(154 words)

[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…

## Quincunx

(173 words)

[German version] The quincunx ( quinque unciae; Greek πεντόγκιον/ pentónkion) was a Roman measure equalling 5/12 of a larger unit, also in the sense of 5% in interest or an inheritance. As a measure of weight it corresponds to 5/12 libra = 136,4 g, as one of area to 5/12 iugerum = 1051 m2, as one of volume 5/12 sextarius = 0·23 l. Because of its exceptional position within the usual duodecimal system, weights of this value are extraordinarily rare. Examples from the Roman period bear the value mark IIIII (CIL XIII 10030,36) or V, pieces from the Byzantine period Γ-Ε. The quincunx as a bronze…

## Cardo, kardo

(377 words)

[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)

[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.),…

## Sextarius

(163 words)

[German version] (later Greek ξέστης/ xéstēs, 'a sixth'). Roman unit of fluid and dry capacity equalling 1/48 of an amphora [2], 1/6 of a congius, 2 heminae , 4 quartarii and 12 cyathi (Cyathus [2]; see table); a sextarius corresponds to approximately 0,546 l. As a measure of volume sextarius also occurs on ancient measuring vessels. Colloquially sextarius was also used for 1/6 of anything. The sextarius was the largest measure of both fluid and dry capacity; higher units had distinct names. Roman units of fluid and dry capacity and their relationships: sextarius      Unit:     cyathus  …