Calibration table

 © Technisches Museum Wien, Photo: Peter Sedlaczek
Collection Area
Technical and Scientific Principles
At the moment this object is not published in the museum.

Each town and each state once had its own measuring system. Today, that's unimaginable. However, the standardization of measurement systems is not quite 150 years old.

Such dimensional standards as the calibration table from the collection of the Technisches Museum Wien (Vienna Technical Museum) were used to establish dimensions locally. In German, it is called a "Zimentiertisch", which means a calibration table. On it are various measures of capacity, a long linear measure (of the "Viennese fathom" and cubit) and various weights. A Ziment is equivalent to 0.3538 litres, a capacity that is still in use in pubs here as a "stein".

The calibration table comes from the time of Maria Theresa (mid to late 18th century). In spite of its magnificent design, it was a working item of furniture. On the upper section, a note states the following: "Francisci et M.Theresiae Augustorum Providentia et Authoritate Restituta Mensura Viennensis Anno 1756 /. in Tyrolim vero Introductae Anno 1756 et 1770". The dimensions were thus established in Vienna in 1756 and introduced in the Tyrol in 1756 and 1770.

On 14 July 1756, Maria Theresa issued letters patent on dimensions, which ordered a uniform system of measurement for all hereditary lands. The Viennese dimensions, embodied in new originals, were considered to be the legally-specified dimensions that had to be used in trade and commerce. Calibration was carried out by the Imperial and Royal Handgrafenamt in Vienna, which was also responsible for the "Consumtionsaccise", a type of consumer tax.

Used by: The Imperial and Royal Calibration Inspectorate for the Tyrol and Vorarlberg
Date of construction: around 1770

Inv.Nr. 19899/1

Member of