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tael

[teyl] /teɪl/
noun
1.
2.
any of various other similar units of weight in the Far East.
3.
a former Chinese money of account, being the value of this weight of standard silver.
Origin
1580-1590
1580-90; < Portuguese < Malay tahil liang
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for tael

tael

/teɪl/
noun
1.
a unit of weight, used in the Far East, having various values between one to two and a half ounces
2.
(formerly) a Chinese monetary unit equivalent in value to a tael weight of standard silver
Word Origin
C16: from Portuguese, from Malay tahil weight, perhaps from Hindi tolā weight of a new rupee, from Sanskrit tulā weight
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Encyclopedia Article for tael

a Chinese unit of weight that, when applied to silver, was long used as a unit of currency. Most taels were equivalent to 1.3 ounces of silver.

Learn more about tael with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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