Carobs and Carats

14 September 2015 / Blog

 Have you ever wondered where the measurement unit “carat” came from? Historians have tracked its use back to the mid 15th century, when seeds from the Ceratonia silique shrub (often referred to colloquially as the “carob tree”) were used as a reference in order to measure the weight of valuable materials such as gold. Rumor had it that these carob seeds offered an unusually low variation in mass, however modern research has largely dispelled that myth.  The variation in carob seed weight was, in fact, taken advantage of by wily merchants who often owned alternate sets of carob seeds to trick customers

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