The pous was a unit of length used through much of the Iron Age in Europe and the Ancient Near East.

A pous is a Greek foot, also known as an extreme james. 1 stadion is always 600 pousthough the length of the pous varies like the Mesopotamian units, where the cubit or "ku" was divided into four different digits, a thumb, palms, and various hands, fists, spans and quarters. The Greek pous also has long, median and short forms.

Comparative analysis

A pous is divided into digits ("daktylos" or finger) which are multiplied as shown. Generally the sexagesimal or decimal multiples have Mesopotamian origins while the septenary multiples have Egyptian origins.

Greek measures of short median and long pous can be thought of as based on body measures. Stecchini and others propose the Greek pous are different sizes because they are divided into different numbers of different sized "daktylos" to facilitate different calculations. The most obvious place to observe the relative difference is in the Greek orders of architecture whose cannon of proportions is based on column diameters.


Mathematical and metrological references

* H Arthur KleinSection:Book reference after author|Year=1976|Title=The World of Measurements |Publisher=Simon and Schuster|ID=
* R. A. CordingleySection:Book reference after author|Year=1951|Title=Norman's Parallel of the Orders of Architecture|Publisher=Alex Trianti Ltd|ID=
* Francis H. MoffittSection:Book reference after author|Year=1987|Title=Surveying|Publisher=Harper & Row|ID=ISBN 0-06-044554-8
* GillingsSection:Book reference after author|Year=1972|Title=Mathematics in the time of the Pharaohs|Publisher=MIT Press|ID=ISBN 0-262-07045-6
* Lucas N. H. Bunt, Phillip S.Jones, Jack D. Bedient Section:Book reference after author|Year=1976|Title=The Historical Roots of Elementary Mathematics|Publisher=Dover|ID=ISBN 0-486-25563-8
* Somers Clarke and R. EnglebachSection:Book reference after author|Year=1990|Title=Ancient Egyptian Construction and Architecture|Publisher=Dover|ID=ISBN 0-486-26485-8
* GardinerSection:Book reference after author|Year=1990|Title=Egyptian Grammar|Publisher=Griffith Institute|ID=ISBN 0-900416-35-1

Linguistic references

* Anne H. GrotonSection:Book reference after author|Year=1995|Title=From Alpha to Omega|Publisher=Focus Information group|ID=ISBN 0-941051-38-2
* J. P. MallorySection:Book reference after author|Year=1989|Title=In Search of the Indo Europeans |Publisher=Thames and Hudson|ID=ISBN 0-500-27616-1

Classical references

* Vitruvius Section:Book reference after author|Year=1960|Title=The Ten Books on Architecture|Publisher=Dover|ID=
* Claudias Ptolemy Section:Book reference after author|Year=1991|Title=The Geography|Publisher=Dover|ID=ISBN 0486268969
* Herodotus Section:Book reference after author|Year=1952|Title=The History|Publisher=William Brown|ID=

Archaeological historical references

* Michael Grant Section:Book reference after author|Year=1987|Title=The Rise of the Greeks |Publisher=Charles Scribners Sons|ID=
* Lionel Casson Section:Book reference after author|Year=1959|Title= The ancient mariners: seafarers and sea fighters of the Mediterranean in ancient times|Publisher=Macmillan|ID=OCLC|392365
* James B. Pritchard Section:Book reference after author|Year=1968|Title=The Ancient Near East|Publisher=OUP|ID=
* Nelson Glueck Section:Book reference after author|Year=1959|Title=Rivers in the Desert|Publisher=HUC|ID=

Medieval references

* Jean GimpelSection:Book reference after author|Year=1976|Title=The Medieval Machine|Publisher=Holt Rheinhart & Winston|ID=ISBN 0-03-014636-4
* H Johnathan Riley SmithSection:Book reference after author|Year=1990|Title=The Atlas of the Crusades |Publisher=Swanston|ID=ISBN 0-7230-0361-0
* Elizabeth HallamSection:Book reference after author|Year=1986|Title=The Plantagenet Chronicles|Publisher=Weidenfeld & Nicolson|ID=ISBN 1-55584-018-3
* H.W. KochSection:Book reference after author|Year=1978|Title=Medieval Warfare|Publisher=Prentice Hall|ID=ISBN 0-13-573600-5

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Pous — pous, pouts nm puits Occitan …   Glossaire des noms topographiques en France

  • Pous — Ce nom désigne le possesseur d un puits ou celui qui habite près d un puits (latin puteum) …   Noms de famille

  • pous — ME. form of pulse …   Useful english dictionary

  • pous — acar·pous; ac·ro·car·pous; am·phit·ro·pous; anat·ro·pous; an·gi·o·car·pous; an·tho·car·pous; ap·o·car·pous; at·ro·pous; au·to·car·pous; blas·to·car·pous; cam·py·lot·ro·pous; car·pous; cat·a·wam·pous·ly; chryso·car·pous; clad·o·car·pous;… …   English syllables

  • POUS — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom.   Sigles d’une seule lettre   Sigles de deux lettres   Sigles de trois lettres > Sigles de quatre lettres …   Wikipédia en Français

  • pous — pousse, pous m. pouls; tempe …   Diccionari Personau e Evolutiu

  • pous —    the ancient Greek foot, a unit of distance equal to about 30.7 centimeters, a little longer than the modern English foot. The plural is podes.    The pous was divided into 16 daktylos (digits). There were 100 podes in a plethron and 600 in a… …   Dictionary of units of measurement

  • pous — noun A measure of length found in Iron Age Europe and the Ancient Near East, considered the Greek foot . Its exact value was variable, but was always one six hundredth of a stadion …   Wiktionary

  • pous — (G). Afoot …   Dictionary of word roots and combining forms

  • Pous — Kat dwèt ki pi gwo nan ven dwèt moun gen nan pye avèk nan men yo. Yon dimansyon ki prèske menm longè avèk espas ki ant de mak nan dwèt yon moun …   Definisyon 2500 mo Kreyòl