In China, 1915 – 1929, a unit of mass, 133¹⁄₃ av. pounds, approximately 60.48 kilograms¹. Also called a pikul. After 1929, the market tan (shi tan) = 50 kilograms, about 110.23 av. pounds. On Taiwan, 20ᵗʰ century = 60 kilograms.

1. United Nations, 1955. Pages 47 and 48.


In Japan, ?–20ᵗʰ century¹, a unit of area for agricultural land, = 10 se = 300 bu, from 1598 ¹²⁰⁰⁰⁰⁄₁₂₁ square meters, approximately 991.7355 square meters (about 0.245 acres). For the earlier value see below.

The fourth section of the Reform Edict of Taika (646 ce), states in part:

“All rice fields shall be measured by a unit called a tan which is thirtypaces in length by twelve paces in breadth. Ten tan make one cho. For each tan, the tax shall be two sheaves and three bundles of rice; for each cho, the tax shall be twenty-two sheaves of rice.”

Toward the end of the 16ᵗʰ century Toyotomi Hideyoshi ordered a survey of the nation, and defined the units for doing so. A note from an official to the local farmers: (Cadastral Survey, 1598)

“A pole with the length of six shaku three sun shall be regarded as one ken. Henceforth, one tan shall be 300 bu, consisting of an area five ken by sixty ken.”²

Prior to Hideyoshi's decree of 1598, 1 tan = 360 bu, about 1189.8 square meters (about 0.294 acres).

1. United Nations, 1966.

2. Okubo Toshiaki et al, editors.
Shiryo ni yoru Nihon no Ayumi (Japanese History through Documents)
Kinseihen (Early Modern Period)
Tokyo: Yoshikawa Kobunkan, 1955.

Page 33.


In Japan, a standardized roll of cloth, 36 centimeters wide by about 10 meters long, enough for a kimono.


In Korea, 20ᵗʰ century, a unit of area, approximately 991.74 square meters (about 0.245 acres).

United Nations, 1966.

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