Do the British Use Israelite Weights and Measures?
Weights and measures of
ancient Israel correspond precisely with modern English and American weights
instance, regarding linear measures, the remains of the synagogues in
Galilee and portions of the substructure of the Temple, have all been
set out in Hebrew CUBITS of sixteen English INCHES. The 18" cubit was still used commonly in many white countries up until the 19th century. But its modern name was "Ells". This is because it was roughly the length of a man's arm, from elbow to end of middle finger. Hence the name "Ell" from "Elbow." An ell-wand was a rod of one ell length used for official measurement. Edward I of England required that every town have one. The
ROYAL CUBIT (translated cubit of a man), is mentioned in Deuteronomy
3:11 and the CUBIT and HANDBREADTH ("tupah") occur
in Ezekiel 40:5. The length of a CUBIT and a TUPAH is
18.66 INCHES. The ancient BARLEYCORN was 1/8 INCH. The
SPAN is exactly 8 INCHES. A FURLONG is exactly 55.5
English YARDS. A Hebrew SMALL MILE is exactly 444 English
YARDS. Sotah 5:3 mentions a SABBATHDAY JOURNEY (Tehum) of exactly
888 YARDS (2,000 ordinary steps or a little over half an English mile).
The STAGE equalled our modern MILE.
In square measure, the ancient ZEMEED was an area equal to 1/3 ACRE, exactly 1,480 English YARDS. The ACRE of the sanctuary and the British ACRE are very nearly alike.
In dry measures of capacity, one ancient SEAH was equal to our
modern PECK within approximately one per cent and one ancient KOR
was equal to our QUARTER within one-third of one per cent. The Hebrew LAVER and old English CHALDRON are 32 bushels or four quarters -- the origin of the quartern loaf. The ark of the covenant was a Hebrew LAVER. (See page 35 of British-Israel Bible Notes by J. Bell, 1903).
In liquid measure, one HIN was equal to our GALLON within
about one per cent. The HIN of 12 LOGS equalled exactly
268 cubic INCHES or 1.012 English GALLONS. A SEAH corresponded
to exactly 576 cubic INCHES or 1.012 English PECKS. THREE SEAHS equal one EPHA. The Hebrew KOR of 30 SEAHS is
equal to exactly 17,280 cubic INCHES or .993 of an English
QUARTER. The Hebrew BATH is equal to 1,728 cubic
INCHES or exactly one English cubic FOOT.
In units of weight, Sixteen TROY GRAINS equal one GERAH. There is a remarkable relationship between the ancient system of liquid
measures and the British unit of linear measure, and weight because the
CUBIC FOOT is identical with the ancient BATH, a liquid
measure and 24 CUBIC INCHES equal one LOG (the volume of
six hen eggs) and that volume of water at 62 degrees Farenheit weighs
within one per cent of 6000 GRAINS. Modern jewelers still use the
ancient CARAT and the Hebrew word for best gold is "CHARUTS." Both the Jewish and British systems of money were based on the weights
of precious metals in terms of simple multiples of the TROY GRAIN, which unit was identical with the weight ascribed by the Jews to a
grain of BARLEY. For instance the small Hebrew MINA was
9600 GRAINS of BARLEY, the Shekel was 320 GRAINS
of BARLEY and a DRACHMAE was 16 GRAINS of
BARLEY. These coincidences denote a common source for British and
Jewish weights and measures. The
ancient French, Italian, Spanish and German measures were different.
The contents of English measures of capacity, as fixed by Act of Parliament,
have not been scientifically referred to the unit of linear measures.
Had that been done, all of the above-names measures would have had an
exact correspondence.(For more see F.R. & C.R. Conder's Handbook
to the Bible, 1880)
Numbers "16" and "32"
as a pound is equal to 16 ounces, so the Hebrew GERA is equal to
16 TROY GRAINS and the BEKA is equal to 160 TROY GRAINS
(.33 ounces) and the large MINA is 16,000 TROY GRAINS (33.33
ounces). Just as one Quart is 32 ounces, so also one SHEKEL is
320 TROY GRAINS (.75 ounces) and one CARAT is 3.2 TROY GRAINS. The British system is the same as the Israelite system -- both use
16 and 32 and their multiples.
Shilling is the Half-Shekel
SHILLING of England is the SCHILLING of Holstein and the
SKILLING of Scandinavia, "ing" being a patronymic diminutive,
the SKILLING or SHILLING is the son of a SHEKEL,
i.e. a Half-Shekel of the sanctuary. It is a striking confirmation of
the Hebrew origin of the Anglo-Saxons that their national coin represents
the Temple tribute ordained for Israel. In Latin countries, from Calais
to Varna, the franc, peseta, lira, drachma or bano (in each case valued
at about 9.5d.) represents
the Denarius of the Romans.
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