As roundly 1200 cubits, showing a cubit of about 17.6 in.
For the length of the building cubit Sir C. Warren has deduced a length equivalent to 20.6169 English inches, which compares with a mean Pyramid cubit of 20.6015 in.
Arnold-Forster, The Coming of the Kilogram, 1898), as the foot, palm, hand, digit, nail, pace, ell (ulna), &c. It seems probable, therefore, that a royal cubit may have been derived from some kingly stature, and its length perpetuated in the ancient buildings of Egypt, as the Great Pyramid, &c.
Thus foot, digit, palm, cubit, stadium, mile, talent, mina, stater, drachm, obol, pound, ounce, grain, metretes, medimrius, modius, hin and many others mean nothing exact unless qualified by the name of their country or city.
Most ancient measures have been derived from one of two great systems, that of the cubit of 20.63 in., or the digit of 0.729 in.; and both these systems are found in the earliest remains.
The average of several cubit rods remaining is 20.65, age in general about 2500 B.C. (33).
This unit is also recorded by cubit lengths scratched on a tomb at Beni Hasan (44), and by dimensions of the tomb of Ramessu IV.
From this cubit, mahi, was formed the xylon of 3 cubits, the usual length of a walking staff; fathom, nent, of 4 cubits, and the khet of 40 cubits (18); also the schoenus of 12,000 cubits, actually found marked on the Memphis-Faium road (44).
The multiples of the 20.63 cubit are in late times generally reckoned in these feet of 2/3 cubit.
On the Egyptian cubits a small cubit is marked as about 17 in., which may well be this unit, as (5/6)ths of 20.6 is 17.2; and, as these marks are placed before the 23rd digit or 17.0, they cannot refer to 6 palms, or 17.7, which is the 24th digit, though they are usually attributed to that (33).
For instance, Lepsius (3) supposed two primitive cubits of 13.2 and 20.63, to account for 28 digits being only 20.4 when free from the cubit of 20.63--the first 24 digits being in some cases made shorter on the cubits to agree with the true digit standard, while the remaining 4 are lengthened to fill up to 20.6.
The pre-Greek examples of this cubit in Egypt, mentioned by BÃ¶ckh (2), give 18.23 as a mean, which is 25 digits of 0.7292 digits, close to 0.729, but has no relation to the 20.63 cubit.
This cubit, or one nearly equal, was used in Judaea in the times of the kings, as the Siloam inscription names a distance of 1758 ft.
This is also evidently the Olympic cubit; and, in pursuance of the decimal multiple of the digit found in Egypt and Persia, the cubit of 25 digits was (1/4)th of the orguia of 100 digits, the series being --
Then, taking (2/3)rds of the cubit, or (1/6)th of the orguia, as a foot, the Greeks arrived at their foot of 12.14; this, though very well known in literature, is but rarely found, and then generally in the form of the cubit, in monumental measures.
Seeing the good reasons for this digit having been exported to the West from Egypt--from the presence of the 18.23 cubit in Egypt, and from the 0.729 digit being the decimal base of the Greek long measures--it is not surprising to find it in use in Italy as a digit, and multiplied by 16 as a foot.
The more so as the half of this foot, or 8 digits, is marked off as a measure on the Egyptian cubit rods (33).
-The earliest sign of this cubit is in a chamber at Abydos (44) about 1400 B.C.; there, below the sculptures, the plain wall is marked out by red designing lines in spaces of 25.13 ± 0.03 in., which have no relation to the size of the chamber or to the sculpture.
They must therefore have been marked by a workman using a cubit of 25.13.
The corrupt text in Chronicles of 3000 baths would need a still longer cubit; and, if a lesser cubit of 21.6 or 18 in, be taken, the result for the size of the bath would be impossibly small.
Oppert (24) concludes from inscriptions that there was in Assyria a royal cubit (7/6)ths of the U cubit, or 25.20; and four monuments show (25) a cubit averaging 25.28.
For Persia Queipo (33) relies on, and develops, an Arab statement that the Arab cubit was the royal Persian, thus fixing it at about 25 in.; and the Persian guerze at present is 25, the royal guerze being 1+(1/2) times this, or 371 in.
Other units are the suklum or (1/2)U=5.4, and cubit of 2U=21.9, which are not named in this tablet.
This cubit was also much used by the Jews (33), and is so often referred to that it has eclipsed the 25.1 cubit in most writers.
There is also a great amount of medieval and other data showing this cubit of 21.6 to have been familiar to the Jews after their captivity; but there is no evidence for its earlier date, as there is for the 25 in.
Cubit from the Siloam inscription.
A cubit of 21.5 seems certainly to be indicated in prehistoric remains in Britain, and also in early Christian buildings in Ireland (25).
- In Persia some buildings at Persepolis and other places (25) are constructed on a foot of 9.6, or cubit of 19.2; while the modern Persian arish is 38.27 or 2x19.13.
It may be shown by a mark (33) on the 26th digit of Sharpe's Egyptian cubit = 19.2 in.
Beside the equivalence of the hon to 5 utens weight of water, the mathematical papyrus (35) gives 5 besha = (2/3)cubic cubit (Revillout's interpretation of this as 1 cubit cubed is impossible geometrically; see Rev. Eg., 1881, for data); this is very concordant, but it is very unlikely for 3 to be introduced in an Egyptian derivation, and probably therefore only a working equivalent.
The other ratio of Revillout and Hultsch, 320 hons = cubit cubed, is certainly approximate.
Cubit of 21.5 holding 320 logs puts the bath at about 2250 cub.
In.; their log-measure, holding six hen's eggs, shows it to be over rather than under this amount; but their reckoning of bath = a half cubit cubed is but approximate; by 21.5 it is 1240, by 25.1 it is 1990 cubic in.
By the theory of maris 1/5 of 20.6 cubed is 1755; by maris = Assyrian talent, 1850, in place of 1850 or 1980 stated above; hence the more likely theory of weight, rather than cubit, connexion is nearer to the facts.
By the theory (18) of 2 metretes = cube of the 18.67 cubit from the 12.45 foot, the cotyle would be about 25.4, within 0.4; but then such a cubit is unknown among measures, and not likely to be formed, as 12.4 is (3/5)ths of 20.6.
(This result is from a larger number than other students have used, and study by diagrams.) The theory (3) of the derivation of the uten from 1/1500 cubic cubit of water would fix it at 1472, which is accordant; but there seems no authority either in volumes or weights for taking 1500 utens.
Another theory (3) derives the uten from 1/1000 of the cubic cubit of 24 digits, or better of 6/7 of 20.63; that, however, will only fit the very lowest variety of the uten, while there is no evidence of the existence of such a cubit.
If, however, the weight in a degraded form, and the foot in an undegraded form, come from the East, it is needless to look for an exact relation between them, but rather for a mere working equivalent, like the 1000 ounces to the cubit foot in England.
(23) Sir Isaac Newton, Dissertation upon the Sacred Cubit (1737);
The most commonly used measures of length are the span (mto), the cubit (kru), and the arm's-length or fathom (dompa).
Sir Isaac Newton left behind him in manuscript a work entitled Observations on the Prophecies of Daniel and the Apocalypse of St John, which was published in London in 1733, in one volume 4to; another work, entitled Lexicon Propheticum, with a dissertation on the sacred cubit of the Jews, which was printed in 1737; and four letters addressed to Bentley, containing some arguments in proof of a Deity, which were published by Cumberland, a nephew of Bentley, in 1756.
It was of similar construction to the altar of burnt-offering, but smaller, being 2 cubits high and i cubit square (Ex.
According to Nebuchadrezzar, Imgur-Bel was built in the form of a square, each side of which measured "30 aslu by the great cubit"; this would be equivalent, if Professor F.
The largest of all, however, was the macrocollon, probably of good quality and equal to the hieratic, and a cubit or nearly 18 in.
Its dimensions are given as 300 cubits long, 50 cubits broad and 30 cubits high (cubit =18-22 in.).
But Buteo and Kircher have proved geometrically that, taking the cubit of a foot and a half, the ark was abundantly sufficient for all the animals supposed to be lodged in it.
Among the antiquities preserved in the museum are the epitaph of Boabdil, the last king of Granada, who died at Tlemcen in 1494, and the standard cubit measure - in marble - used in the Kissaria, bearing date A.H.
Buildings will generally yield up their builder's foot or cubit when examined (Inductive Metrology, p. 9).
In Egypt the cubit lengthened 1/170 in some thousands of years (25, 44) The Italian mile has lengthened 1/170 since Roman times (2); the English mile lengthened about 1/300 in four centuries (31).
Relative to the uncertain connexion of length, capacity and weight in the ancient metrological systems of the East, Sir Charles Warren, R.E., has obtained by deductive analysis a new equivalent of the original cubit (Palestine Exploration Fund Quarterly, April, July, October 1899).
He shows that the length of the cubit arose through the weights; that is to say, the original cubit of Egypt was based on the cubic double -- cubit of water -- and from this the several nations branched off with their measures and weights.
The Hebrew "shekel of the sanctuary" is familiar; the standard volume of the apet was secured in the dromus of Anubis at Memphis (35); in Athens, besides the standard weight, twelve copies for public comparison were kept in the city; also standard volume measures in several places (2); at Pompeii the block with standard volumes cut in it was found in the portico of the forum (33); other such standards are known in Greek cities (Gythium, Panidum and Trajanopolis) (11, 33); at Rome the standards were kept in the Capitol, and weights also in the temple of Hercules (2); the standard cubit of the Nilometer was before Constantine in the Serapaeum, but was removed by him to the church (2).