## MINISTRY OF MEASURES |

DIRECTOR Olybrius Jameson |

**ABOUT **

On a certain number of barley-corns is founded the most ancient standard on record, that of the Jews in the time of Moses: the shekel consisted of 20 gerahs, each gerah containing the weight of 16 grains of barley, as Maimonides informs us.% There is a sort of coincidence between our pennyweight and the gerah, in the former containing just double the number of grains that the latter does ; but this coincidence becomes still more remarkable from the fact, that 16 grains of our barley weigh half a pennyweight. Whence we derived our weight, it is impossible to say with certainty; but from this circumstance there is a presumption that we had it from the East, directly or indirectly : a presumption heightened by the consideration, that the shekel of the sanctuary weighed twice as much as the ordinary shekel, and contained therefore the same number of barley-corns which our ounce contains of wheat-corns. The silver shekel did not long continue to denote this, but the weights and measures which are on record prove it, for these do not alter like coins. " Sicla, siclus, sigla, mensura liquidorum. Apud Graecos et Latinos, sicel est quarta pars unciae, et stateris medietas, drachmas appendens duas : apud Hebrceos verb est uncicz pondus" — " Siclo, idem quod siclus, seu uncia apud Hebrceos." — "Siclus, apud Hebraeos moneta notissima; uncia apud Hebrceos: apud Latinos quarta pars unciae."* — The standard of liquid measure among the Jews was the contents of 6 middle-sized hen's-eggs, which formed a measure called a log, about 10 of our ounces: 12 logs, or 120 ounces, formed a hin, a measure equal to our present gallon.