MATT to MAUND
MATT, s. Touch (of gold). Tamil marru (pron. mattu), perhaps from Skt. matra, measure. Very
pure gold is said to be 9 marru, inferior gold of 5 or 6 marru.
[1615.Tecalls the matte Janggamay 8 is Sciam 7½.Foster, Letters, iii. 156.The same word
was used in Japan for a measure, sometimes called a fathom.
[1680.Matt. See under
1693.Gold, purified from all other metals
by us is reckoned as of four-and-Twenty Carats,
but by the blacks is here divided and reckoned as of ten mat. Havart, 106.
Coffee Trade brings in a continual Supply of Silver and Gold
from Turkey, Ebramies and Mograbis,
Gold of low Matt.A. Hamilton, i. 43, [ed. 1744].
to find the Value of the Touch in Fanams,
multiply the Matt by 10, and then by 8, which gives it in Fanams. T. Brooks, 25.
[1614.The Matt which is about two yards.Foster, Letters, ii. 3.]
MAUMLET, s. Domestic Hind. mamlat, for omelet; [Mamlet is marmalade].
MAUND, s. The authorised Anglo-Indian form of the name of a weight (Hind. man, Mahr. man), which,
with varying values, has been current over Western Asia from time immemorial. Professor Sayce traces
it (mana) back to the Accadian language.1 But in any case it was the Babylonian name for 1/80 of a
talent, whence it passed, with the Babylonian weights and measures, almost all over the ancient world.
Compare the men or mna of Egyptian hieroglyphic inscriptions, preserved in the emna or amna of
the Copts, the Hebrew maneh, the Greek [Greek Text] mna, and the Roman mina. The introduction
of the word into India may have occurred during the extensive commerce of the Arabs with that country
during the 8th and 9th centuries; possibly at an earlier date. Through the Arabs also we find an old Spanish
word almena, and in old French almène, for a weight of about 20 lbs. (Marcel Devic).
The quotations will
show how the Portuguese converted man into mão, of which the English made maune, and so (probably
by the influence of the old English word maund)2 our present form, which occurs as early as 1611.
Some of the older travellers, like Linschoten, misled by the Portuguese mão, identified it with the word
for hand in that language, and so rendered it.
The values of the man as weight, even in modern times,
have varied immensely, i.e. from little more than 2 lbs. to upwards of 160. The Indian Maund, which
is the standard of weight in British India, is of 40 sers, each ser being divided into 16 chhitaks; and
this is the general scale of subdivision in the local weights of Bengal, and Upper and Central India, though
the value of the ser varies. That of the standard ser is 80 tolas (q.v.) or rupee-weights, and thus the
maund = 82 2/7 lbs. avoirdupois. The Bombay maund (or man) of 48 sers = 28 lbs.; the Madras one
of 40 sers = 25 lbs. The Palloda man of Ahmadnagar contained 64 sers, and was = 163¼ lbs. This
is the largest man we find in the Useful Tables. The smallest Indian man again is that of Colachy in
Travancore, and that = 18 lbs. 12 oz. 13 dr. The Persian Tabrizi man is, however, a little less than
7 lbs.; the man shahi twice that; the smallest of all on the list named is the Jeddah man = 2 lbs. 3 oz.
B.C. 692.In the Eponymy of Zazai, a house in Nineveh, with its shrubbery and gates, is sold for one
maneh of silver according to the royal standard. Quoted by Sayce, u.s.
B.C. 667.We find Nergal-
sarra-nacir lending four manehs of silver, according to the maneh of Carchemish.Ibid.
c. B.C. 524.Cambyses
received the Libyan presents very graciously, but not so the gifts of the Cyrenaeans. They
had sent no more than 500 minae of silver, which Cambyses, I imagine, thought too little. He therefore
snatched the money from them, and with his own hand scattered it among the soldiers.Herodot. iii.
ch. 13 (E.T. by Rawlinson).
c. A.D. 70.Et quoniam in mensuris quoque ac ponderibus crebro Graecis
nominibus utendum est, interpretationem eorum semel in hoc loco ponemus:
mna, quam nostri minam
vocant pendet drachmas Atticas c.Pliny, xxi., at end.
c. 1020.The gold and silver ingots amounted
to 700,400 mans in weight. Al Utbi, in Elliot, ii. 35.
1040.The Amír said: Let us keep fair measure,
and fill the cups evenly.
Each goblet contained half a man. Baihaki, ibid. ii. 144.
The Mena of Sarai makes in
Genoa weight . . . lb. 6 oz. 2
The Mena of Organci (Urghanj)
. . . lb. 3 oz. 9
The Mena of Oltrarre (Otrar)
in Genoa . . . lb. 3 oz. 9
The Mena of Armalecho (Al-
in Genoa . . . lb. 2 oz. 8
The Mena of Camexu (Kancheu
in N.W. China) . . . lb. 2