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All Words Glossary

Glossary of Weights and Measures Terms
beginning with letter B
Browse the Weights and Measures Glossary
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balance Tweet Definition of balance Like Definition of balance on Facebook
noun
  1. A pair of scales.
  2. (uncountable) equilibrium, Equilibrium in movement.
  3. (uncountable) support, Support for both viewpoints, substances etc or neither; neutrality.
  4. A list accounting for the debits on one side, and for the credits on the other
verb (balanc, ing)
  1. (transitive) to make (items) weigh up.
  2. (transitive) (figurative) to make (concepts) agree.
  3. (transitive) to hold (an object or objects) precariously.
  4. (transitive) to make the credits and debits of (an account) correspond.
  5. (intransitive) to be in equilibrium.
  6. (intransitive) to have matching credits and debits.
barleycorn Tweet Definition of barleycorn Like Definition of barleycorn on Facebook
noun
  1. a grain of barley
  2. (context, UK, obsolete) the length of such a grain; a unit of length of approximately one third (or sometimes one quarter) of an inch or 8mm.
  3. (architecture. woodworking) a small groove between two mouldings
  4. In English tradition John Barleycorn personifies beer and whisky which are produced from malt a product of barley.
barrel Tweet Definition of barrel Like Definition of barrel on Facebook
noun
  1. (countable) A round vessel or cask, of greater length than breadth, and bulging in the middle, made of staves bound with hoops, and having flat ends or heads. Sometimes applied to a similar cylindrical container made of metal, usually called a drum.
a cracker
  1. The quantity which constitutes a full barrel. This varies for different articles and also in different places for the same article, being regulated by custom or by law. A barrel of wine is 31 1/2 gallons; a barrel of flour is 196 pounds; of beer 31 gallons; of ale 32 gallons.
Quotations
  • 1882: Again, by 28 Hen. VIII, cap. 14, it is re-enacted that the tun of wine should contain 252 gallons, a butt of Malmsey 126 gallons, a pipe 126 gallons, a tercian or puncheon 84 gallons, a hogshead 63 gallons, a tierce 41 gallons, a barrel 31.5 gallons, a rundlet 18.5 gallons. — James Edwin Thorold Rogers, A History of Agriculture and Prices in England, Volume 4, p. 205.
1882: 23 Hen. VIII, cap. 4... The barrel of beer is to hold 36 gallons, the kilderkin 18 gallons the firkin 9. But the barrel, kilderkin, and firkin of ale are to contain 32, 16, and 8 gallons. — James Edwin Thorold Rogers, A History of Agriculture and Prices in England, Volume 4, p. 205.
  1. A solid drum, or a hollow cylinder or case;
''the of a windlass; the barrel of a watch, within which the spring is coiled.
  1. A metallic tube, as of a gun, from which a projectile is discharged.
  2. (obsolete) A jar. Obs. 1 Kings xvii. 12.
  3. (archaic) A tube.
  4. (zoology) The hollow basal part of a feather.
  5. (music) The part of a clarinet which connects the mouthpiece and upper joint, and looks rather like a barrel (1).
  6. (context, idiomatic, surfing) A wave that breaks with a hollow compartment.
  7. (context, US, specifically, _, New England) A waste receptacle.
Throw it away in the trash .
  1. The ribs and belly of a horse or pony.
verb (barrel, l, ed)
  1. to move quickly or in an uncontrolled manner
He came barrelling around the corner and I almost hit him.
breadth Tweet Definition of breadth Like Definition of breadth on Facebook
noun
  1. the extent or measure of how broad or wide something is
  2. a piece of fabric of standard width
  3. scope or range, especially of knowledge or skill
bushel Tweet Definition of bushel Like Definition of bushel on Facebook
noun
  1. A dry measure, containing four pecks, eight gallons, or thirty-two quarts.
The Winchester bushel, formerly used in England, contained 2150.42 cubic inches, being the volume of a cylinder 181/2 inches in internal diameter and eight inches in depth. The standard bushel measures, prepared by the United States Government and distributed to the States, hold each 77.6274 pounds of distilled water, at 39.8° Fahr. and 30 inches atmospheric pressure, being the equivalent of the Winchester bushel. The imperial bushel now in use in England is larger than the Winchester bushel, containing 2218.2 cubic inches, or 80 pounds of water at 62° Fahr.
Quotations
  • 1882: The quarter, bushel, and peck are nearly universal measures of corn. — James Edwin Thorold Rogers, A History of Agriculture and Prices in England, Volume 4, p. 207.
    1. A vessel of the capacity of a bushel, used in measuring; a bushel measure.
    2. A quantity that fills a bushel measure; as, a heap containing ten bushels of apples.
In the United States a large number of articles, bought and sold by the bushel, are measured by weighing, the number of pounds that make a bushel being determined by State law or by local custom. For some articles, as apples, potatoes, etc., heaped measure is required in measuring a bushel.
  1. A large indefinite quantity. Colloq.
  2. The iron lining in the nave of a wheel. Eng. In the United States it is called a box.
butt Tweet Definition of butt Like Definition of butt on Facebook
noun
  1. The rear end of an animal or human; rear end.
  2. (slang) The buttocks; used as a euphemism, less objectionable than arse/[[ass
    • Get up off your and get to work.
      1. (slang) Body; self.
    • Get your to the car.
    • We can't chat today. I have to get my to work before I'm late.
      1. The larger or thicker end of anything; the blunt end, in distinction from the sharp end; as, the butt of a rifle. Formerly also spelled but.
      2. A limit; a bound; a goal; the extreme bound; the end.
    • 1604, William Shakespeare, Othello, Act V, Scene II, line 267.
    • :Here is my journey's end, here is my / And very sea-mark of my utmost sail.
      1. A mark to be shot at; a target.
    • 1598, William Shakespeare, Henry V, Act I, Scene II, line 186.
    • :To which is fixed, as an aim or ...
    • 1786, Francis Grose, A Treatise on Ancient Armour and Weapons, page 37.
    • :The inhabitants of all cities and towns were ordered to make butts, and to keep them in repair, under a penalty of twenty shillings per month, and to exercise themselves in shooting at them on holidays.
      1. A piece of land left unplowed at the end of a field.
      2. A person at whom ridicule, jest, or contempt is directed; as, the butt of the company.
      3. A push, thrust, or sudden blow, given by the head of an animal; as, the butt of a ram.
      4. A thrust in fencing.
      5. (lacrosse) The plastic or rubber cap used to cover the open end of a lacrosse stick's shaft in order to prevent injury.
      6. The portion of a half-coupling fastened to the end of a hose.
      7. The end of a connecting rod or other like piece, to which the boxing is attached by the strap, cotter, and gib.
      8. (context, mechanical) A joint where the ends of two objects come squarely together without scarfing or chamfering; " also called a butt joint.
      9. (context, carpentry) A kind of hinge used in hanging doors, etc.; so named because fastened on the edge of the door, which butts against the casing, instead of on its face, like the strap hinge; also called butt hinge.
      10. (context, shipbuilding) The joint where two planks in a strake meet.
      11. (context, leather trades) The thickest and stoutest part of tanned oxhides, used for soles of boots, harness, trunks.
      12. The hut or shelter of the person who attends to the targets in rifle practice.
      13. (context, English units) An English measure of capacity for liquids, containing 126 wine gallon]s; [[equivalent to the pipe.
    • 1882, James Edwin Thorold Rogers, A History of Agriculture and Prices in England, p. 205.
    • : Again, by 28 Hen. VIII, cap. 14, it is re-enacted that the tun of wine should contain 252 gallons, a of Malmsey 126 gallons, a pipe 126 gallons, a tercian or puncheon 84 gallons, a hogshead 63 gallons, a tierce 41 gallons, a barrel 31.5 gallons, a rundlet 18.5 gallons. "
      1. A wooden cask for storing wine, usually containing 126 gallons.
    • 1611, William Shakespeare, The Tempest, Act II, Scene II, line 121.
    • : ...I escap'd upon a of sack which the sailors heav'd o'erboard...
verb (butts, butting, butted, butted)
  1. To strike bluntly, particularly with the head.

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