Portugese wine measures
standard of Lisbon

18th century and before

                   

tonel

             

pipa or bota

2*†

             

barril or tercerola

1 4/9?

3?

           

meia pipa

1 5/13?

2

4

           

terço

1.5

2 1/13?

3

6

       

barril or quartola

1¹⁄₃?

2

2 10/13?

4

8

       

almude

6½?

8²⁄₃?

13

18*‡

26*†‡

52*†‡

alqueira or pote

2†‡

13?

17¹⁄₃?

26

36?

52†

104*†

   

canada

6

12†‡

78?

104?

156

216?

312†

624*†

quartilho

4

24

48†‡

312?

416?

624

864?

1248†

2496†*

Kelly

344 mL

1.38 L

8.27 L

16.541 L

107.5 L

142.58 L

215.03 L

297.74 L

430.07 L

860.13 L

Arróspide

342 mL

1.37 L

8.197 L

16.39 L

106.56 L

142.08 L

213.15 L

295.09 L

426.24 L

852.49 L

Kruse

353 mL

1.411 L

8.47 L

16.93 L

110.06 L

146.74 L

220.12  L

304.78 L

440.23 L

880.46

Nelkenbrecher

348 mL

1.39526 L

8.37 L

16.74 L

108.83 L

145.11 L

217.66 L

301.38 L

435.32 L

870.64 L

The two columns with barril in their head and the column headed terço should be viewed skeptically. We are not even certain that the terço existed during this period. The dictionaries by Transtagno (1773) and Elwes (5th ed. 1907, page 264) say a quartola is half a pipa. The literature mentions units not shown here, but with little corroboration, such as a quartaõ = 3 canadas and a quadeiro = 5 alqueires. Moreover, strange equivalences occur, such as 1 canada = 5 alqueires, and 1 almude = 11 canadas. So we expect this chart to evolve.

The numbers that have been taken directly from the literature, not calculated, have superscripts that identify their source. Those meanings are given below. Question marks identify suspect equivalencies we calculated. In the rows of equivalents in liters, the root value given by or calculated from the source is shown in boldface. The other values in the row were calculated from that root.

The standard of Oporto is roughly 30% bigger.

*Tomas Antonio de Marien y Arróspide.
Tratado General de Monedas, Pesas, Medidas y Cambios de Todas las Naciones, reducidadas á las que se usan en España.
Madrid: en la Imprenta de D. Benito Cano, 1789.
Page 136. The metric value is based on Arróspide's statements that "El Alquier ó Pote de Lisboa equivale á 17¼ quartillos Castellanos", and that 100 Pintes de Paris = 196 quartillos (page 177). We assume 1 Paris pinte = 0.93132 liters.

Kruse, (4th ed., 1781), page 225. The metric value is based on Kruse's "11 Stübgen Hamburger Maaß, sind 28 Canadas in Lissabon" (page 225) and "7 Stübgen, oder 28 Quartier Hamburger Maaß, machen 27 Pintes in Paris" (page 294). We assume 1 Paris pinte = 0.93132 liters.

Kelly (1821), page 212.

Nelkenbrecher (13th ed., 1820), p 172.

 

After reforms in the early 19th century

                 

tonel

               

pipa

2

             

meia pipa

2

4

           

terço

3

6

        barril or quartola

1¹⁄₃

2

4

8

       

almude

6 ¼

8¹⁄₃

12½

25

50

     

pote

2

12½

16²⁄₃

25

50

100

   

canada

6

12

75

100

150

300

600

 

quartilho

4

24

48

300

400

600

1200

2400

 

350 mL

1.400 L

8.40 L

16.800 L

105.00 L

140.00 L

210.00 L

420.00 L

840.00 L

There was also a half (meio quartilho) and a quarter (quarto de quartilho) quartilho.

Joaquim Jose da Graça.
Systema Legal de Medidas.
Lisboa: Typographia Universal, 1864.
Page 103.

Mappas das Medidas do Novo Systema Legal
Lisboa: Imprensa Nacional, 1868.
Page 172.
[From page 298: “Esta publicação é official. Repartição dos pesos e medidas 30 de outubro de 1868.. O chefe da repartição Joaquim Henriques Fradesso da Silveira.”]

 

The smallest units were consumer or tavern measures; the tonel was so large it was rarely used. In many locations either the size of units or their relationship to other units, or both, differed from the Lisbon standard. For example, 1 almude contained 12 canada almost everywhere, yet there were towns where it contained 10, 11 even 14 canadas. The liquid measures of the city of Porto were all larger than those of Lisbon.

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