In Tanganyika, 20ᵗʰ century, a unit of capacity, = 4 kibaba = 4 liters.

Technical Conversion Factors…, 1972, page 318.



Pishi, s. (ya), a measure for measuring solid matters. One pishi contains four kebába, one kebaba is about a pint basin full, about a pound and a half; cfr. fara and rotteli.

L. Krapf.
A Dictionary of the Suahili Language.
London: Trübner and Co., 1882.
Page 305.


Measures of weight

For heavy articles, the usual unit is a rátel, or rattli, equal to 10 wakia, and corresponding to one pound.
16 wakia = 1 rátel.
3 rátel = 1 mani.
6 rátel = 1 pishi.
6 pishi = 1 frasila, about 35 lbs. avoirdupois.
10 frasila = 1 mzo.

Measures of capacity

The smallest unit is the Kibaba, a measure of perhaps a pint.
Kibaba cha tele, if the measure is heaped up—the usual proceeding.
Kibaba cha mfuto, if cut off flat.
2 vibaba (vya tele) = 1 kisaga.
2 visaga = 1 pishi, about half a gallon.

The pishi connects the measures of capacity and weight, and for some of the common dry commodities, such as chiroko and kundi, the pishi may be regarded as equivalent either in capacity to 4 vibaba, or in weight to 6 rattli.

Edward Steere.
A Handbook of the Swahili Language as Spoken at Zanzibar. 3rd ed.
London: Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1884.
Page 457.

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