A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: David C
Date: 2020 Sep 27, 15:05 -0700
Sure, it's a 16th of a mile. City blocks in Chicago (where I grew up) were two furlongs long. And more recently, the Kentucky Derby (and other horse races) was measured innfurlongs. Furlongs are convenient since a square, two furlongs on a side, contains 10 acres, which are city blocks in Chicago.A quarter section is four furlings on a side. And, of course there are 10 chains in a furlong.
Gary I am sure that you will know that a cricket pitch is 22 yards (or 1 chain) long! If you google "length cricket pitch" you will see how silly metric conversions of traditional measurements can be. At least the MCC has not completely succumbed to the silliness - it gives the traditional value first followed by the metric version eg 10ft/3.05m. See law 6 (not rule)
Similar problems arise when place names are "corrected". I have no problem with that but a difficulty arises when discussing historic events. Do you use the spelling of the time or the new official spelling? I am inclined to use the spelling in use at the time. Others have a different view and automatically convert to the official spelling. It is a similar issue to that I mentioned in a previous post - a reporter converts 10,000 feet to 3048 m without stopping to think what she is doing.