Page images

valence and importance of foreign (Dutch) trade in Guernsey, and of the coasting (French) trade in Jersey.

As it stands now, therefore, the following statement will show the relative and actual values of the various standards:

1lb. Jersey

=7561 grs.=1lb. 14oz. 15grs.=1.08lbs. Avoirdps. =1 13 80 =1.09

1,, Guernsey=7627

[ocr errors]

The Jersey local hundred weight consists of 104 Jersey pounds, and the Guernsey hundred weight of 100 Guernsey pounds.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

The English hundred weight of 112 lbs. has the following values:

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

The smaller divisions of the pound bear the same proportion as in England; but the old French gros, or half-quarter ounce, and its half, the demi-gros, are still retained in Jersey. The demi-gros is 29 grains.

For common purposes, thirteen Jersey pounds are considered equivalent to fourteen English. Twenty-five Jersey pounds are very nearly equivalent to twenty-seven pounds avoirdupois.

The modern French pound, or demi-kilo, contains 7722 grains, and is therefore considerably in excess of any of the above. It is, however, sometimes used in Guernsey, especially when steelyards, manufactured in France, are employed for weighing. It may be convenient to state, therefore, that the centner, quintal or one hundred French pounds (fifty kilogrammes) is nearly equivalent to 110 lbs. 5 ozs. avoirdupois; to 102 lbs. 2 ozs. Jersey, and 101 lbs. 4 ozs. Guernsey weight.

The weights used in Alderney, Sark, and Herm, are the same as those of Guernsey.



Linear and Square Measure.

The ordinary measure of length in all the islands is the standard English foot, of twelve inches.

In square measure, however, the Jersey method of calculation is very peculiar. The Jersey square foot is a space twelve Jersey inches in breadth, each such inch being twenty-four Jersey feet long by one inch broad. The square foot thus becomes an area, measuring twenty-four Jersey feet by one Jersey foot. In this measurement, however, the linear Jersey foot is equivalent to only eleven English inches, so that the square foot of Jersey equals twenty and one-sixth square feet English measurement.

In the case of glazier's work, the square foot measures only eight inches long by eight broad, or sixty-four square inches English.

In measuring land, the perch contains twenty-four Jersey square feet of the kind above stated, and is therefore equivalent to four hundred and eighty-four English square feet, or an area twenty-two English feet square.

Forty perches make a vergée, of about 2,150 square yards English. Thus two and a-quarter Jersey vergées are nearly equivalent to the English acre.

For other matters, the English measures are adopted.

In Guernsey, the English measurements of the foot are used. The perch there measures seven yards, or twenty-one feet, each side, and thus contains forty-nine square yards instead of about fifty-four, as in Jersey. The vergée of Guernsey contains 1,960 square yards, and two and a-half Guernsey vergées are equal to an English acre.

The Alderney measures of land are the same as those used in Guernsey.

The Sark vergée corresponds with that of Jersey.

Measures of Capacity.

In Jersey, the only true ancient standard for measuring liquids and corn is the "Etalon du Chasteau," which contains 24 gallons, 10 pots, or 20 quarts, Jersey measure. The standard contains

43 lbs. 7 ozs. avoirdupois of distilled water at 60° F., the barometer standing at 29 in. The Jersey quart thus contains 60-483 cubic inches, and the Jersey gallon 241·932 cubic inches.

The Jersey wine gallon, as commonly estimated, contains rather more than two hundred and forty-seven cubic inches English, being thus thirty cubic inches, or more than eleven per cent smaller than the English imperial gallon of two hundred and seventy-seven and a-quarter cubic inches. The Jersey quart, of which there are four to the gallon, nearly corresponds with the French litre.

The Guernsey standard wine gallon contains two hundred and sixty-four cubic inches, and is thus seventeen cubic inches, or about seven per cent. larger than that of Jersey, and thirteenand a-quarter cubic inches, or five per cent., smaller than the imperial gallon.

For certain purposes of taxation, the Guernsey gallon is estimated at two hundred and sixty-one cubic inches.

The smaller divisions are into pots (half-gallon), quarts, pints, gills (quarter of a pint), and noggins (an eighth of a pint).

The hogshead of cider in Jersey contains sixty gallons. In all the islands, dry measure is estimated by weight, though named by measure. The weight allowed varies for different


In Jersey, the measure of dry goods is the cabot, or halfbushel, already described, containing 43 lbs. 7 ozs. of distilled water. The imperial quart, under precisely similar conditions, contains forty ounces, and the imperial gallon ten pounds. The Jersey cabot is thus equivalent to 4.34375 imperial gallons (1204-3 cubic inches).

[blocks in formation]

The cabot is divided into five gallons, or six sixtonniers. Eight cabots make one quarter, and ten quarters one ton.

The Jersey gallon contains a little less than seven pints imperial measure, and the Jersey quarter (thirty-four gallons and three quarts) a little more than half an imperial quarter.

The wheat or standard cabot (le petit cabot) containing 1204-3 cubic inches, is smaller than that used for barley, oats, potatoes, &c., which contains 1605.7 cubic inches. Nine wheat cabots are equivalent to five English bushels. The cabot of wheat, when sold by weight, is thirty-two pounds; of oats, ' twenty-eight pounds; of barley, thirty-six; of apples, thirtyeight; and of rye and potatoes, forty pounds, all Jersey weight. Forty-two cabots of apples make a quarter, of 1596 lbs. The wheat cabot contains ten pots, and that for barley, rye, peas, beans, and potatoes, is one-third larger.

In Guernsey, the denerel, or dundrel, is the common small unit of dry measure; and goods are sold either by the denerel or bushel of admitted weight. Three denerels, in Guernsey, make one cabot; two cabots or six denerels, one bushel; and four bushels, one quarter. The English imperial quarter is equivalent to about two Guernsey quarters.

It may be worth stating that the Guernsey heaped bushel is nearly equivalent to the imperial strike bushel.

The Sark cabot is one-sixth of the Guernsey quarter.

The liquid and dry measures used in Alderney are those of Guernsey.

N.B.-Great care has been taken to obtain accurate information on the subject of the island weights and measures. The accounts here given are believed to be correct, although they do not exactly agree with any of those published in the local almanacs, or in the various histories of the islands, which, indeed, do not agree with each other.




The following abstract of returns published of the census of 1861 and of some former censuses of the present century may be useful for reference :

[blocks in formation]

The number of males in Jersey on the occasion of the last census was 25,304; and of females, 30,774. There is thus a very large excess of females. In Guernsey and the smaller islands, there were 16,546 males and 18,816 females. The excess of females in Jersey is 9.75 per cent. of the total population, and in Guernsey 7.6 per cent.

« PreviousContinue »