Weights, nested

Description (Brief)
Nested weights were primarily used by merchants to measure coins. Four examples of nested cup weights are found within the Squibb Apothecary Collection, all of which were manufactured in Nuremberg. This set was used in France as indicated by the adjuster's stamps on the bottom of the cups. The total weight of the set is 16 French Livres, or 32 French Marcs. The house lid has a split V, 3 arm design common to weight sets made in Nuremberg. The two outer arms of the V are made of sea dogs or dolphins, and the hinge arm resembles a sea horse with two heads. Mermaids with their hands on their hips support the handle. (Handle Missing) The outer house has a series of stamps imprinted upon the circular patterns. The copper-master's mark, a bell, is stamped 1 x upon the lid. Other stamps or marks include a number of Fleurs-de-lis, as well as a crown and a star. Both stamps are said to be indicative of the type used by French adjusters. The French spelling of Mars is also found on the cup.
Currently not on view
Object Name
weights, nested
date made
Physical Description
metal (overall material)
overall: 15.5 cm x 14.5 cm x 11.5 cm; 6 1/8 in x 5 11/16 in x 4 1/2 in
place made
Deutschland: Bayern, Nuremberg
ID Number
accession number
collector/donor number
SAP 409
catalog number
European Apothecary
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Medicine
European Apothecary
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Bristol-Myers Squibb Company
Related Publication
Houben, Gerard M.M.. 200 Years of Nested Cup Weights
Urdang, George and Ferdinand William Nitardy. The Squibb Ancient Pharmacy: A Catalogue of the Collection
Additional Media

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