Extra, Extra? Read All About It! Wikipedia lists the weight of the Roman pound (libra) at 328.9 grams, and the Roman ounce (uncia) at 27.4 grams. Encyclopedia Britannica also tabulates the Roman pound as weighing in at 328.9 grams. Academic checked calculations then, with zero room for error? Heck, the top search engine results that The Machine (system) goes out of its way to make people form their reality around says it is true in doubly fashion, so it has to be, right!?
Besides, way more than 20 media outlets (the system) all claimed simultaneously that Saddam Hussein harboured “weapons of mass destruction,” so the butchering and ultimate destruction or Iraq and its innocent citizenry was akin to baptizing a newborn baby. Bring on the holy-water boarding! That wacky academic consensus. Could it possibly be non-sensus? Well, CO2 is the only input driving climate science in this loss of all sight age we currently live within, but definitely not on top of. Officially year negative 3. Oh, those “professionals.” Textbook examples of being educated to the infinite point of nothingness? Fourword: welcome to the system.
Well to be fair, Wikipedia does explicitly state, “Modern estimates of the libra range from 322 to 329 g (11.4 to 11.6 oz) with 5076 grains or 328.9 g (11.60 oz) an accepted figure.” Fair enough chaps and lasses. A 7 gram range then, an oh so small, yet simultaneously large margin of discrepancy. Certainly people right until yesterday have lost their lives for much less than a 7 gram discrepancy, regardless of what drug was being peddled. One must assume that Britannica’s encyclopedists are too busy counting “royal” gerbil habitrail volumes than making an attempt at figuring out a mathematical inquiry that does not finish up Chuck’s alley of liking.
Hey, I just want to know how many grams were in an ancient antiquity uncia and libra of liberating liberty cap mushrooms? Nobody likes to be shorted after all. Though if the academics are correct, those libra’s were possibly 4.9 grams heavy. First, let this Virgo regurgitate the fact of the Roman libra of yore as being the reason as to why the pound of today is abbreviated as lb. Here is the origin of the word pound which derives from the Latin word pondō.
Speaking of regurgitating. 324.00 grams. I had read elsewhere that 324.00 grams is what a Roman libra weighed. Not only so, but that it was divided into 12.00 uncia. Simple math (324÷12=27) would dictate that the Roman uncia weighed 27.00 grams. Clearly the equation is much too complex for academic publication, so they butchered it like an Iraqi baby in need of “democracy?” Wikipedia lists its source as per the classification of a roman pound as coming from: Smith, Sir William; Charles Anthon (1851) A new classical dictionary of Greek and Roman biography, mythology, and geography partly based upon the Dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology.
Though in reality, I know not how “Sir” Smith derived his weight structure of the Roman libra & accompanying uncia. If one were to harbour a guess, it would be from that of tabulating ancient roman weights and reference from surviving Roman writings perhaps? And in reality, as this paper states, ancient weight systems are highly unreliable with a coefficient of variation around ∼5 to 6%. As well the weight scales did change at different times of the Roman Empire.
It sure does seem though, according to early (7th century BC) bronze ingot castings that the measurement and weight systems that the Romans were using tried very hard to produce items that were evenly divisible in length, height and weight. Below, I will skim the surface of the depths that could be gone into, strictly out of an acquired interest, and possibly striking a spark within others perhaps.
Below is the Wikipedia legend of the divisions of the libra: uncia – 1/12, sescuncia – 1/8, sextant – 1/6, quadrant – 1/4, triens – 1/3, quincunx – 5/12, semis – 1/2, septunx – 7/12, bes – 2/3, dodrans – 3/4, sextant – 5/6, deunx – 11/12.
Owning a calculator and possessing curiosity into the contrarian reason for the 324.00 gram libra, the 27.00 gram uncia and subsequent divisional characteristics of the sextant, quincunx, septunx…..as being possibly based off of the even number of 324.00, therefore the numbers on the chart below of Wikipedia display having a chance of being inaccurate to history and the relics left behind to prove such in detail?
The simple fractional libra calculation performed that I will display below the chart had basically alleviated all of the trailing decimal points when adding a thousandths, ten thousandths, or hundred thousandths to the computation. The 2013 book, Italian Cast Coinage, by Italo Vecchi clearly comes up with the same conclusions, though many years earlier. And no doubt other people have reached the same conclusion. Though nobody really elaborates as to why 324.00 grams becomes the possible benchmark for the Roman libra?
I suspect that 324 and the number of degrees in a circle, 360, along with the accompanying divisional fractional equations and sums might have an integral part to do with it. As an example: derivatives of 360 such as 36, if subtracted from 360 comes to the round number of 324 that is posited to be the precise number of grams in a Roman uncia by contrarian historians. Subtract again 36 from 324 now and the number 288g (scripula – a 288th of a libra.) Minus 36 from 288 a few more times and one gets 216, (a bessis – 2/3rds of a libra.) of which repeats to other libra fraction of 108, (triens – 1/3rd of a libra.) As well 36 is a derivative of 12, of which is the exact number uncia purported to be in a Roman libra. Again, the circle probably had a major role in ancient units of measure, as well as multiples of ten: 36 & 360. 27 &270. 18 &180……
Now if one divides 360 by 288 it comes to 1.25, or a derivative of 3.75, 7.5, 11.25, 15, 22.5……. of which very often divide the numeric values (size and weight) of roman pre-coin ingots (aes formatum) into numbers lacking any decimal points and that are derivatives of 12. Example from aes formatum pictured below: 180mm ÷ 1.25= 144, or half a scripula (288th of a libra.) or 2700g ÷ 3.75= 720, number of degrees in a circle times two. The 1.25 fractional division works on many cast Roman ingots, large and small including aes signatum like such. (sometimes it is necessary to adjust by a mm or three the dimensions due to an uneven casting pour.) Many of the complete ingots in the Italian Cast Coinage book are divisible by size and weight into the 1.25 fractional measurements.
Mess around on a calculator until your eyes cross and one comes up with things like 180 ÷ 1.25=144, of which is the same answer as 12 x 12 =144. Also that to dispute the Wikipedia & Britannica numerical fractions for number of grams in an uncia comes into play when the contrarian uncia of 27 grams is divided into a srupulum (1/24 of an uncia) a revised number reads out as 1.125 (not 1.14 as per Wikipedia.) Then when one divides 324 (Roman libra) by 288 (Roman scripula) one gets 1.125 as well, which in reality is just multiples of 12.
And all this after reading about a 324 gram libra and 27 gram uncia that differed from academic consensus, then getting drunk one night and stumbling upon the weight and dimension of the cast Roman ingot pictured below that peaked my curiosity after having come across a Spanish article about Roman pre-coins and the number 3.75. This non mathematician has input so many numbers into my calculator in the past little while that I tire of it greatly. Heck, and the ancients did this all without calculators or the modern numeral system we have today.
Quite interestingly 8.6 x 3.14= 27.004. The number of grams in a Roman uncia? 27 x 10 = 3/4’s of a circle in degree form.
8.6 (pi as 8.6 years in days – 3139), it will add to calculator sickness. Trust me.
|Roman unit||English name||Equal to||Metric equivalent||Imperial equivalent||Description|
|uncia||Roman ounce||1⁄12libra||27.4 g||0.967 oz||lit. “a twelfth”|
|sescuncia or sescunx||1⁄8 libra||41.1 g||1.45 oz||lit. “one and one-half twelfths”|
|sextans||1⁄6 libra||54.8 g||1.93 oz||lit. “a sixth”|
|1⁄4 libra||82.2 g||2.90 oz||lit. “a fourth”
lit. “triple twelfth”
|triens||1⁄3 libra||109.6 g||3.87 oz||lit. “a third”|
|quincunx||5⁄12libra||137.0 g||4.83 oz||lit. “five-twelfths”|
|semis or semissis||1⁄2 libra||164.5 g||5.80 oz||lit. “a half”|
|septunx||7⁄12libra||191.9 g||6.77 oz||lit. “seven-twelfths”|
|bes or bessis||2⁄3 libra||219.3 g||7.74 oz||lit. “two [parts] of an as“|
|dodrans||3⁄4 libra||246.7 g||8.70 oz||lit. “less a fourth”|
|dextans||5⁄6 libra||274.1 g||9.67 oz||lit. “less a sixth”|
|deunx||11⁄12libra||301.5 g||10.64 oz||lit. “less a twelfth”|
|328.9 g||11.60 oz
|Except where noted, based on Smith (1851). Metric equivalents are approximate, converted at 1 libra = 328.9 g .|
Contrarian Revision of the Roman Libra to 27 Grams
Uncia – 1/12 of a Libra
1 ÷ 12= .083333333333
.0833333333 x 324= 26.9999999892.
Close enough to call 27g?
Sescuncia – 1/8 of a Libra
1 ÷ 8= .125.
.125 x 324= 40.5.
The only fraction of a libra to have a decimal point and being a derivative of 27.
27 + 13.5= 40.5g.
Sextans – 1/6 of a Libra
1 ÷ 6= .1666666666.
.1666666666 x 324= 53.9999999784.
Close enough to call 54g?
27 x 2= 54.
Quadrans – 1/4 of a Libra
1 ÷ 4= .25.
.24 x 324= 81g.
27 x 3= 81.
Triens – 1/3 of a Libra
1 ÷ 3= .3333333333.
.3333333333 x 324= 107.9999999892.
Close enough to cal 108g?
27 x 4= 108.
Quincunx – 5/12 of a Libra
5 ÷ 12= .4166666666.
.4166666666 x 324= 134.9999999784.
Close enough to call 135g?
5 x 27= 135.
Semis – 1/2 of a Libra
1 ÷2= .5.
.5 x 324= 162g.
6 x 27= 162.
Septunx – 1/7 of a Libra
7 ÷12= .5833333333.
.5833333333 x 324= 188.9999999892g.
Close enough to call 189g?
27 x 7= 189.
Bes – 2/3 of a Libra
2 ÷ 3= .6666666666.
.6666666666 x 324= 215.9999999784g.
Close enough to call 216g?
27 x 8= 216.
Dodrans – 3/4 of a Libra
3 ÷ 4= .75.
.75 x 324= 243g.
27 x 9= 243g.
Dextans – 5/6 of a Libra
5 ÷ 6= .8333333333.
.8333333333 x 324= 269.9999999892g.
Close enough to call 270g?
27 x 10= 270.
Deunx – 11/12 of a Libra
11 ÷ 12= .9166666666.
.9166666666 x 324= 296.9999999784g.
Close enough to call 297g?
27 x 11= 297g.
1 ÷ 1= 1.
1 x 324= 324.
Close enough to call 324g?
27 x 12= 324.
Rounding it Out
If you made it this far congatulations!
I am beginning to think that the term, number of the beast – 666, was coined due to an observer watching ancient mathematicians dissect the numbers of the circle and coming up with a method to arrive at units of weight and the accompanying monetary system.
333333…. and 666666… sure seem to appear a lot when dissecting 360 and 324 along with other derivatives along the way.
My neck and back muscles are wound tight after molesting a calculator in my recent spare time, and I have been dreaming about numbers along the way.
Perhaps one day, I will be able to go into more detail about Roman cast ingots of antiquity and other measurements not determined by others.