weights and measures

The United States is the only industrialized country that has not yet completely converted to the Metric System. The British system (no longer in legal use in the UK, its colonies or the Commonwealth) is particularly confusing. It is impossible to summarize, but Wikipedia explains the history of UK measurement in detail.

Prior to 1826 the English system was very complex:

English units evolved as a combination of the Anglo-Saxon and Roman systems of units. Contrary to popular belief, the Norman conquest of England in 1066 had little effect on British weights and measures other than to introduce one new unit: the bushel. The two main sets of English units were the Winchester Units, in effect from 1495

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