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I got the statement that the fathom was once defined as 1/100 of a cable, or 1/1000 of a nautical mile, or 1/1000 of a minute of latitude from a wikipedia article that gave the Oxford Dictionary of Weights, Measures and Units as the source of the definition. I found an inexpensive copy of the dictionary on the internet and decided to get it, partially to make sure it said what wikipedia said it said, and partially to see what else might be in the dictionary.

Sure enough, the dictionary says the fathom is usually 6 ft, but sometimes defined as 1/100 of a cable, and the dictionary says that the cable is defined by the Admiralty as 1/10 of a minute of latitude.

Here is a paragraph that is included in the definition of cubit: "The Great Pyramid of Ghiza was measured in the 1880s by Flinders Petrie as having sides of length 230.24 to 230.4m. with a mean of 230.355m. Postulating them as being 250 points to a cubit of about 461mm and a fathom of about 1.84m. i.e. very close to today's international nautical mile, the length of one minute of latitude. In turn this indicates that the Ancient Egyptians nearly 5000 years ago, measured Earth's radius." p. 53

First, I think Fenna meant to say 500 points to a cubit instead of 250, since 230.355/.461 = 499.7. Also, given a fathom equal to four cubits, 500 cubits equals 125 fathoms, and 230.355/125 = 1.842m. 1842m is a little bit short for an average minute of latitude, but it is accurate for minutes of latitude at the equator. Given 125 fathoms per side, this gives 500 fathoms for the perimeter, equal to 1/2 minute of latitude at the equator, which has of course been pointed out before, although perhaps not to my knowledge in fathoms.

The half-minute of latitude is a measure of the circumference and Fenna does not explain how he gets from there to radius, and a half minute of equatorial latitude x 2 x 60 x 360 / 2pi is still a bit short even for the polar radius, because the equatorial degrees of latitude are so short, but regardless of how he got there, I agree with him that the Ancient Egyptians did know the measure of the earth's radius and I was surprised and happy to find this statement in the current Oxford dictionary of weights, measures and units.

Subject Views Written By Posted
Remen : Meridian 2674 Jim Alison 15-Nov-19 22:52
DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 340 PB Bytes 16-Nov-19 17:55
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 328 DUNE 17-Nov-19 09:56
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 307 Jim Alison 17-Nov-19 23:45
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 307 PB Bytes 17-Nov-19 23:59
Found it! 346 PB Bytes 18-Nov-19 02:55
Re: Found it! 305 Mercurial 20-Nov-19 11:44
Re: Found it! 289 Jim Alison 20-Nov-19 14:42
Squaring The Circle 318 Dr. Troglodyte 20-Nov-19 18:59
Re: Squaring The Circle 311 Jim Alison 20-Nov-19 20:02
Re: Squaring The Circle 302 Jim Alison 20-Nov-19 20:22
Remen references 325 Lee McGiffen 21-Nov-19 01:59
Re: Remen references 326 Jim Alison 21-Nov-19 04:29
Re: Remen references 294 magisterchessmutt 24-Nov-19 13:56
Re: Remen references 263 Jim Alison 24-Nov-19 20:05
Re: Remen references 291 magisterchessmutt 24-Nov-19 21:17
Re: Remen references 272 magisterchessmutt 25-Nov-19 01:24
Re: Remen references 259 magisterchessmutt 25-Nov-19 12:10
Re: Remen references 314 DUNE 25-Nov-19 13:17
Re: Remen references 225 Jim Alison 16-Jan-20 20:22
Drastic Geodetic Measures and Nippur Cubit 309 thinkitover 25-Nov-19 06:46
Re: Remen references 292 Jim Alison 26-Nov-19 08:04
Re: Remen references 326 Lee McGiffen 27-Nov-19 12:54
Re: Remen references 274 Mercurial 28-Nov-19 22:32
Re: Remen references 340 Jim Alison 01-Dec-19 06:15
Re: Squaring The Circle 337 magisterchessmutt 21-Nov-19 00:47
Re: Squaring The Circle 282 magisterchessmutt 21-Nov-19 02:32
Re: Squaring The Circle 274 Jim Alison 21-Nov-19 05:20
Re: Squaring The Circle 351 magisterchessmutt 21-Nov-19 06:26
Egyptian knowledge of âˆš2 274 Lee McGiffen 22-Nov-19 06:39
Re: Egyptian knowledge of âˆš2 246 magisterchessmutt 23-Nov-19 01:19
Re: Egyptian knowledge of âˆš2 300 thinkitover 23-Nov-19 09:45
Re: Egyptian knowledge of âˆš2 263 magisterchessmutt 23-Nov-19 14:42
Re: Egyptian knowledge of âˆš2 257 PB Bytes 23-Nov-19 16:10
Everything Mick wrote here - 86 pages 283 geoffss 21-Nov-19 10:49
Re: Everything Mick wrote here - 86 pages 273 magisterchessmutt 21-Nov-19 11:54
Re: Squaring The Circle 237 molder 20-Dec-19 12:45
Re: Found it! 310 Mercurial 22-Nov-19 06:48
Re: Found it! 273 magisterchessmutt 22-Nov-19 12:01
Re: Found it! 268 PB Bytes 22-Nov-19 15:24
Re: Found it! 308 magisterchessmutt 22-Nov-19 23:55
Re: Found it! 267 PB Bytes 23-Nov-19 02:06
Re: Found it! 260 magisterchessmutt 23-Nov-19 02:36
Re: Found it! 256 PB Bytes 23-Nov-19 03:37
Re: Found it! 266 DUNE 23-Nov-19 18:42
Re: Found it! 249 PB Bytes 23-Nov-19 19:37
Re: Found it! 267 DUNE 23-Nov-19 20:14
Re: Found it! 255 PB Bytes 23-Nov-19 20:27
Re: Found it! 252 PB Bytes 23-Nov-19 20:46
Re: Found it! 256 DUNE 23-Nov-19 21:37
Re: Found it! 259 PB Bytes 23-Nov-19 21:55
Re: Found it! 262 DUNE 23-Nov-19 22:24
Re: Found it! 252 PB Bytes 23-Nov-19 22:44
Re: Found it! 313 PB Bytes 24-Nov-19 17:44
Re: Found it! 269 DUNE 24-Nov-19 18:29
Re: Found it! 275 PB Bytes 24-Nov-19 18:34
Re: Found it! 260 PB Bytes 23-Nov-19 20:59
Re: Found it! 255 magisterchessmutt 23-Nov-19 19:55
Totally debunked 266 Lee McGiffen 24-Nov-19 05:23
NOT Totally debunked 256 PB Bytes 24-Nov-19 05:41
eg: NOT Totally debunked 273 PB Bytes 24-Nov-19 06:12
Khufu <> Khafre 297 Dr. Troglodyte 23-Nov-19 00:28
Re: Khufu <> Khafre 255 Mercurial 24-Nov-19 19:12
Khufu <> Khafre - Update 220 Dr. Troglodyte 11-Jan-20 19:56
Re: Found it! 280 Jim Alison 23-Nov-19 01:35
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 271 magisterchessmutt 19-Nov-19 03:45
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 267 Jim Alison 19-Nov-19 14:05
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 287 magisterchessmutt 20-Nov-19 00:27
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 268 Jim Alison 20-Nov-19 15:34
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 267 magisterchessmutt 19-Nov-19 03:49
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 271 DUNE 19-Nov-19 10:37
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 267 Jim Alison 19-Nov-19 14:22
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 260 DUNE 19-Nov-19 15:37
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 259 Jim Alison 20-Nov-19 00:44
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 282 PB Bytes 19-Nov-19 16:43
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 266 Jim Alison 20-Nov-19 01:07
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 292 PB Bytes 20-Nov-19 01:38
Re: DUNE!: Remen : Meridian 264 Jim Alison 20-Nov-19 14:28
Where is this leading? 272 PB Bytes 21-Nov-19 17:19
Re: Where is this leading? 285 Lee McGiffen 22-Nov-19 06:49
Re: Remen : Meridian 283 PB Bytes 16-Nov-19 18:00
Re: Remen : Meridian 286 Jim Alison 16-Nov-19 22:09
Excellent! 293 thinkitover 16-Nov-19 18:29
Re: Excellent! 330 Jim Alison 16-Nov-19 22:24
Re: Excellent! 319 Lee McGiffen 18-Nov-19 07:36
Re: Excellent! 309 Jim Alison 18-Nov-19 15:55
Re: Excellent! 287 magisterchessmutt 19-Nov-19 03:57
Re: Remen : Meridian 283 Spiros 20-Nov-19 15:06
Re: Remen : Meridian 277 Spiros 20-Nov-19 19:28
Re: Remen : Meridian 274 Jim Alison 20-Nov-19 20:24
Re: Remen : Meridian 268 Spiros 20-Nov-19 22:25
Re: Remen : Meridian 302 Spiros 20-Nov-19 22:58
Re: Remen : Meridian 286 Spiros 20-Nov-19 23:49
Re: Remen : Meridian 274 Jim Alison 20-Nov-19 23:40
The Earth number 347 hendrik dirker 21-Nov-19 05:48
Re: The Earth number 296 Jim Alison 21-Nov-19 13:15
Re: The Earth number 294 molder 22-Nov-19 19:30
Re: The Earth number 267 Jim Alison 23-Nov-19 01:44
Geometry as Metrology? 324 thinkitover 23-Nov-19 22:56
Re: Geometry as Metrology? 283 magisterchessmutt 24-Nov-19 00:04
Re: Geometry as Metrology? 290 Jim Alison 24-Nov-19 01:16
Re: Geometry as Metrology? 322 magisterchessmutt 24-Nov-19 01:36
Re: Geometry as Metrology? 321 magisterchessmutt 24-Nov-19 01:49
Re: Remen : Meridian 425 magisterchessmutt 24-Nov-19 02:38
Re: Remen : Meridian 292 DavidK 11-Dec-19 23:26
Re: Remen : Meridian 277 DavidK 12-Dec-19 13:23
Re: Remen : Meridian 323 thinkitover 12-Dec-19 18:51
Re: Remen : Meridian 298 DavidK 12-Dec-19 21:27
Re: Remen : Meridian 251 Jiri Mruzek 13-Dec-19 00:55
Re: Remen : Meridian 236 DavidK 13-Dec-19 09:51
Re: Remen : Meridian 250 Jim Alison 13-Dec-19 03:48
Re: Remen : Meridian 242 magisterchessmutt 13-Dec-19 04:58
Re: Remen : Meridian 239 magisterchessmutt 13-Dec-19 05:44
Re: Remen : Meridian 238 DavidK 13-Dec-19 09:58
Re: Remen : Meridian 243 DavidK 13-Dec-19 09:15
Re: Remen : Meridian 244 magisterchessmutt 13-Dec-19 11:02
Re: Remen : Meridian 261 DavidK 13-Dec-19 11:07
Re: Earth circumference 320 drew 17-Dec-19 23:57
Re: Earth circumference 301 DavidK 18-Dec-19 11:29
Re: Earth circumference 266 drew 20-Dec-19 00:22
Re: Earth circumference 276 hendrik dirker 20-Dec-19 06:07
Re: Earth circumference 250 DavidK 20-Dec-19 13:27
Re: Earth circumference 240 hendrik dirker 21-Dec-19 12:48
Re: Earth circumference 252 Jim Alison 20-Dec-19 20:48
Re: Earth circumference 254 hendrik dirker 21-Dec-19 11:44
Re: Earth circumference 231 drew 20-Dec-19 23:48
Re: Remen : Meridian 240 Jim Alison 20-Dec-19 19:26
Re: Remen : Meridian 238 magisterchessmutt 21-Dec-19 01:54
Re: Remen : Meridian 244 Jim Alison 21-Dec-19 04:30
Re: Remen : Meridian 241 magisterchessmutt 21-Dec-19 07:43
Re: Remen : Meridian 237 DavidK 21-Dec-19 10:56
Re: Remen : Meridian 239 magisterchessmutt 21-Dec-19 11:24
Re: Remen : Meridian 231 magisterchessmutt 21-Dec-19 11:48
Re: Remen : Meridian 223 DavidK 21-Dec-19 16:08
Re: Remen : Meridian 255 DavidK 21-Dec-19 12:49
Re: Remen : Meridian 239 Jim Alison 21-Dec-19 15:19
Re: Remen : Meridian 231 molder 21-Dec-19 20:33
Re: Remen : Meridian 228 DavidK 21-Dec-19 23:49
Re: Remen : Meridian 225 Jim Alison 22-Dec-19 03:02
Re: Remen : Meridian 223 DavidK 22-Dec-19 10:30
Re: Roman measures Hang on let us get this right. 237 molder 22-Dec-19 13:03
Re: Roman measures Hang on let us get this right. 230 DavidK 22-Dec-19 15:01
Re: Roman measures Hang on let us get this right. 234 magisterchessmutt 22-Dec-19 17:13
Re: Roman measures Hang on let us get this right. 240 DavidK 22-Dec-19 17:32
Re: Roman measures Hang on let us get this right. 235 Jim Alison 24-Dec-19 05:23
Stecchini's Metrics 233 thinkitover 21-Dec-19 16:01
Re: Stecchini's Metrics 235 magisterchessmutt 21-Dec-19 17:17
Re: Stecchini's Metrics 238 thinkitover 24-Dec-19 15:06
Re: Remen : Meridian 237 drew 23-Dec-19 00:44
Re: Remen : Meridian 229 Jim Alison 23-Dec-19 02:55
Re: Remen : Meridian 248 DavidK 23-Dec-19 12:34
Re: Remen : Meridian 249 Jim Alison 24-Dec-19 01:09
Re: Remen : Meridian 227 drew 27-Dec-19 23:06
Re: Remen : Meridian 246 DavidK 27-Dec-19 23:59
Re: Remen : Meridian 243 drew 28-Dec-19 22:24
Re: Remen : Meridian 303 DavidK 29-Dec-19 00:50
Re: Remen : Meridian 205 Jim Alison 19-Apr-20 18:46
Re: Remen : Meridian 184 drew 22-Apr-20 23:44
Re: Remen : Meridian 200 magisterchessmutt 23-Apr-20 13:03
Re: Remen : Meridian 208 magisterchessmutt 24-Apr-20 08:14
Re: Remen : Meridian 231 Jim Alison 11-Jan-20 03:53
Re: Remen : Meridian 224 DavidK 11-Jan-20 13:54
The Egyptian Remen 14.58333r inches 391 DavidK 11-Jan-20 16:48
Re: Remen : Meridian 225 Jim Alison 22-Jan-20 00:10
Re: Remen : Meridian 215 Mercurial 22-Jan-20 20:59
say hello to rodz? 243 DavidK 11-Jan-20 18:01
Re: say hello to rodz? 228 thinkitover 12-Jan-20 06:03
Re: say hello to rodz? 233 DavidK 12-Jan-20 12:45
Re: say hello to rodz? 312 thinkitover 13-Jan-20 06:41
Re: Remen : Meridian 260 akitu 24-Apr-20 19:26

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