Olive grower word: CARREGA and QUARTA

Before the kilogram, the gram and the liter, our language had many words to talk about measures, both of weight and capacity.

Words that our grandparents and parents used every day and that filled markets, grocery stores, shops… Each town forged a peculiar system of measurement, although this fact made commercial exchange difficult.

The concern was to establish suitable patterns for selling and buying and it was not until the end of the 18th century – with the creation of the French metric decimal system – that the unification of measurements was achieved.

The metric system provided rational and universal patterns linked to the divisions of the Earth. We will talk about the divisions of the earth another day… ūüôā

But…. did you know that oil had its own measurements?

These measures were related to the types of containers that contained it. The most popular measures in Catalonia were:

-The carga: 1 carga was 125.7 liters of oil in the province of Lleida. And apparently in Lleida we were the most generous in the measure, since in the other provinces the load contained less oil!

-The quartà: 1 quartà was 4.15 liters of oil

What do you think?

Walking through a market at that time must have been quite an interesting experience!


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