Take the 2-minute tour ×
History Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for historians and history buffs. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Does anyone know of a source regarding which finger 'daktylos' refers to (in regards to greek measurments) - the thumb / middle finger / etc.

share|improve this question
We try to avoid asking for sources(see help center), but I think the [answer to your question](units.wikia.com/wiki/Daktylos_(Attic_Greek) is that nobody knows. The reference says we don't have enough information, so we infer a length from another unit. –  Mark C. Wallace Mar 23 '14 at 21:32

1 Answer 1

Daktylos is the Greek word for “finger”. As a unit of measurement it designated the breadth of one finger. I think all fingers (apart from the thumb) are about the same breadth.


share|improve this answer
There are three breadths - thumb, pinkie, and the others. The ancient Hebrew system of measurements differentiated between them - a handbreadth wad defined as 4 thumbs or 5+1/2 'fingers' or 6 pinkies. –  afuna Mar 24 '14 at 5:50

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.