# Swiss units of measurement

A number of units of measurement were used in Switzerland to measure length, mass, etc. Metric system was optional in 1868, and has been compulsory since 1877.[1][2]

## System before metric system

Units were varied and were not in fixed values. During the transition to the metric system, units were fixed.[1] Before 1856, almost every canton had its own system of units.[3]

### Length

A number of units were used to measure length. One pied (1 fuss) was equal to 0.30 m, according to the fixed value defined during the transition to the metric system.[1][4] Some other units and their fixed values are given below:

1 ligne = 1/144 pied

1 linie = 1/144 pied

1 pouce = 1/12 pied

1 zoll = 1/12 pied

1 aune = 2 pied (or 4 pied[3])

1 elle = 2 pied

1 brache = 2 pied[3]

1 toise = 6 pied

1 ruthe = 6 pied

1 perche = 16 pied (or 10 pied[3])

1 lieue = 16 000 pied.[1][4] Lieue was used as a road measure.[3]

### Mass

A number of units were used to measure mass.

#### Ordinary

One livre (pfund of the Zollverein) was equal to 0.500 kg according to the fixed value defined during the transition to the metric system.[1][3][4] Some other units and their fixed values are given below:

1 quintal = 100 livre.[3]

#### Medicine (apothecary or pharmacy)

One livre was equal to 0.375 kg according to the fixed value defined during the transition to the metric system.[1][3][4] Some other units and their fixed values are given below:

1 grain = 1/5760 livre

1 scruple = 1/288 livre

1 drachme = 1/96 livre

### Capacity

Two main systems, dry and liquid, were used.

#### Dry

Several units were used to measure dry capacity. Some units are given below:

1 quarteron (divided into 1/4 and 1/16) = 10 emine = 15 l (0.4257 bushel)

1 double quarteron = 2 quarteron

1 sac = 10 quarteron.[3]

Quarteron is the volume of 30 livre of pure water at 4° Celsius.[3] Quarteron was equal to 5/9 of a cubic pied.[3]

#### Liquid

Several units were used to measure dry capacity. Some units are given below:

1 sctier = 25 pot

1 muid = 4 setiers

1 pot = 1.5 l (1.585 quarts).[3]
Pot was the bulk of 3 livres weight of pure water at the temperature of 4° Celsius. Pot was equal to 1/18 pied^{3} and was subdivided into 1/2, 1/4 and 1/8.[3]

## References

- Washburn, E.W. (1926).
*International Critical Tables of Numerical Data, Physics, Chemistry and Technology*.**1**. New York: McGraw-Hil Book Company, Inc. p. 12. - Cardarelli, F. (2003).
*Encyclopaedia of Scientific Units, Weights and Measures. Their SI Equivalences and Origins*. London: Springer. p. 7. ISBN 978-1-4471-1122-1. - Clarke, F.W. (1891).
*Weights Measures and Money of All Nations*. New York: D. Appleton & Company. pp. 72_73. - Cardarelli, F. (2003).
*Encyclopaedia of Scientific Units, Weights and Measures. Their SI Equivalences and Origins*. London: Springer. p. 84. ISBN 978-1-4471-1122-1.