How were stones used as weights and measures?

Babylonians made important improvements upon the invention of weights and balance using stones. Instead of just comparing the weights of two objects, they compared the weight of each object with a set of stones kept just for that purpose. In the ruins of their cities, archaeologists have found some of these stones finely shaped and polished. It is believed that these were the world’s first weight standards. The Babylonians used different stones for weighing different items. In modern English history, the same basis has been used for weight measurements. For the horseman, the stone weight was 14 pounds (6 kilograms). In weighing wool the stone weight was 16 pounds (7.3 kilograms). For the butcher and fisherman, the stone weight was 8 pounds (3.6 kilograms). The only legal stone weight in the king’s legal system was 14 pounds.


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