Gentle suspense. Tortured heroes. Mischievous heroines.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Word of the Day cubit

Word of the Day

  • cubit
  • audio pronunciation
  • \KYOO-bit\

: any of various ancient units of length based on the length of the forearm from the elbow to the tip of the middle finger and usually equal to about 18 inches (46 centimeters)

The teacher explained that the ancient Egyptians did not measure things in feet and yards as we do but rather calculated measurements using the cubit.

"This kind of marketing probably goes back to Biblical times. Some unemployed shoemaker near the Sea of West Hollywood is heading out to the beach in his ratty old shoes and a surfboard (4 cubits long) when his wife, Sandy, stops him." — From an article by Tony Bender in Devils Lake Journal (North Dakota), August 1, 2013

The cubit is an ancient unit of length that may have originated in Egypt close to 5,000 years ago. "Cubit" can refer to various units used in the ancient world, the actual length of which varied from time to time and place to place, but which was generally equivalent to the length of the human arm from elbow to fingertip—roughly about a foot and a half. (Appropriately, the word's source is a Latin word meaning "elbow.") Starting with the Wycliffe Bible in 1382, "cubit" has been used as the English translation for the measurement known in Biblical Hebrew as the "ammah" and in Koine as the "p├ęchus."


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