The concepts of metric and imperial units have been around for hundreds of years.
The Birth Of The Metric System
Metric units date back as early as 1791. Originally adapted during the French Revolution, the metric system was intended to bring some order to conflicting systems being used throughout Europe.
Before adopting the metric units, Europeans would typically use units of measurements like land area, length or even weight.
Unfortunately, the method of measurement would vary from country to country making it a challenge to buy and export goods.
Pierre-Simone Laplace has been credited as the mastermind behind the development of the metric system. Laplace was a French mathematician, astronomer, and physicist who pioneered the metric system along with a team of scientists.
The Origin Of The Imperial System
The imperial system was also a solution to a similar problem. However, the Imperial system found its roots in Britain.
Today, Britain has adopted the metric system along with the rest of Europe. However, from 1824 until 1965, the imperial system was the primary mode of measurement.
The imperial system is said to be thousands of years old. In fact, it's primary equations come from Anglo-Saxon, Roman, and Celtic units that date back to the middle ages.
By the 17th century, these units would also be communicated in terms such as acres, rods, and furlongs. In some cases, 16 men would be lined up heel to heel in order to find the measurement.
A more streamlined version of the system came into line in 1878. At that time the British Imperial System was converted to more exact definitions of the existing units.