Prior to the French revolution, the livre or (livre-poids, to distinguish it from money) was the basic unit of the French system of weights, with a mass of approximately 489.506 grams. link to a chart showing relationships between French units of mass This value has survived in the 20ᵗʰ century in Mauritius and the Seychelles, where it was called the livre colonial, (UN 1966) and in Haiti, where it is called the livre francaise (UN 1966) to distinguish it from the livre amercaine, which is the pound avoirdupois.

In 20ᵗʰ century France the livre was used informally as a unit = 500 grams, half a kilogram. The same unit is used in Mauritius and many other countries where French is spoken. This is the value that was given the livre in the Système Usuel in 1812.


In Russia, the funt was sometimes referred to as a livre. The apothecaries livre was 11.5204 oz troy.


In Belgium, a kilogram is sometimes called a livre.

Chaney (1911)

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