In England, 16th – 17th centuries, a unit of length, the distance between the fingertips of the outstretched arms, like a fathom. Related to the French bras, Italian brasse, Spanish braza, etc., all based on the word for arm. Some writers, however, (e.g. in Purchas His Pilgrims) equate it with the yard, the length of a single arm (to the nose).
In England, a term of venery, two bucks, foxes, hares, or greyhounds. Also called a lease. From arms coming in twos.
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Last revised: 13 March 2008.