# Thread: vocabulary -gunnery

1. ## vocabulary -gunnery

A soldier misses the target during a gunnery practice and his superior says - "A full quarter chain short. The gunnery of a blind man!"

What is the meaning of the first sentence? "A full quarter chain short" :-/

Thanx a lot!

2. ## Re: vocabulary -gunnery

The quarter chain refers to an old-fashioned measurement device called a surveyor's chain which was 66 feet (20m) long. If the gunner missed his target by a quarter (one-fourth) chain, he was off by about 16 feet (5m).

3. ## Re: vocabulary -gunnery

Thanks a lot!

4. ## Re: vocabulary -gunnery

You're very welcome.

5. ## Re: vocabulary -gunnery

Two related points:

• 1 This 66 ft measurement (also known as "22 yards") is the side of the square measurement 1 acre (about .4 of a hectare): Acre - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia . It's also a tenth of a "furlong" - a measurement used today chiefly in reference to horse races: Furlong - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
• "A quarter chain" was also referred to as a "rod", "pole", or "perch" - but I've never heard these words used (except in mathematical tables that were taught in English schools well into the 1950s).

b

6. ## Re: vocabulary -gunnery

PS This measurement (or some multiple of it) is typically used to measure an allotment (https://www.usingenglish.com/forum/a...tml#post77978).

b

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