or more properly SCRIPULUM or SCRIPLUM (γράμμα
), the smallest denomination of weight
among the Romans. It was the 24th part of the UNCIA
or the 288th of the LIBRA
and therefore about 18 grains English, which
is about the average weight of the scrupular aurei still in existence. [AURUM
As a square measure, it was the smallest division of the jugerum, which
contained 288 scrupula. [JUGERUM
] Pliny (Plin. Nat. 2.48
uses the word to denote small divisions of a degree. It was in fact to be
applicable, according to the use of the As and its parts, to the 288th part
of any unit.
Though the scrupulum was the smallest weight in common use, we find divisions
of it sometimes mentioned, as the obolus
of a scruple, the semi-obolus
= 1/2 of an obolus, and
= 1/3 of an obolus,=1/6 of a
scruple, which is thus shown to have been originally the weight of a certain
number of seeds. (Carmen de Pond.
Semioboli duplum est obolus, quem pondere duplo
Gramma vocant, scriplum nostri dixere priores.
Semina sex alii siliquis latitantia curvis
Attribuunt scriplo, lentisve grana bis octo,
Aut totidem speltas numerant, tristesve lupinos