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# liter

or litre
(L or l)
the common metric unit of volume. The liter was originally defined to be the volume occupied by a kilogram of water, and the gram as the mass of a cubic centimeter of water. This would make the liter equal to exactly one cubic decimeter, that is, to the volume of a cube 0.1 meter (or 10 centimeters) on a side. Unfortunately, the physical objects constructed to represent the meter and kilogram disagreed slightly. As measured by the standard meter and standard kilogram, the standard liter turned out to be about 1.000 028 cubic decimeters. This discrepancy plagued the metric system for a long time. In 1901 an international congress accepted the discrepancy and formally defined the liter to be exactly 1.000 028 dm3. No one was particularly happy with such an awkward definition, and in 1964 the CGPM repealed the definition. In the SI, volumes are to be measured in cubic meters or power-of-ten multiples thereof, not in liters. However, the SI states that the liter "may be employed as a special name for the cubic decimeter."
Throughout this dictionary, the liter is used as a name for exactly 1 cubic decimeter, 1000 cubic centimeters, or 0.001 cubic meter. In its renewed guise as the cubic decimeter, the liter is approximately 61.023 744 cubic inches. Compared to the customary volume units, the liter is a little more than a U. S. liquid quart (1.056 688 qt or 33.814 fluid ounces) but a little less than a U. S. dry quart (0.908 08 qt) or a British Imperial quart (0.879 89 qt or 35.195 fluid ounces). Its name comes from a French volume unit, the litron, which was in turn derived from the Latin litra. The original symbol for the liter was the lower case letter l, but since 1979 the upper case L has also been accepted. The U.S. Department of Commerce specifies that L be used, at least by businesses, to avoid confusion with the numeral 1. The unit is spelled liter in the U.S. and litre in Britain; there are many other spellings in various languages (see Spelling of Metric Units).

Dictionary of units of measurement. 2015.

### Look at other dictionaries:

• liter — [ lite ] v. tr. <conjug. : 1> • 1723; de lit ♦ Techn. Mettre par lits, par couches. Superposer (des poissons salés) par lits dans des barriques. Liter des harengs. ● liter verbe transitif (de lit) Ranger, par lits superposés, des poissons… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

• liter — 1. (li té) v. a. Terme de métier. Arranger les choses par lits.    Terme de pêche. Mettre le poisson, le hareng, la morue, par lits dans les tonnes. ÉTYMOLOGIE    Lit. SUPPLÉMENT AU DICTIONNAIRE 1. LITER. Ajoutez : 2°   Se liter, v. réfl. Être… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

• Litér — Administration …   Wikipédia en Français

• Liter — Liter, Einheit der Flüssigkeitsmaße und Hohlmaße im metrischen System. Es wird dargestellt durch den Raum, den ein Kilogramm reinen Wassers bei seiner größten Dichte unter dem Drucke einer Atmosphäre einnimmt. Das Liter wird also vom Kilogramm… …   Lexikon der gesamten Technik

• liter — the American spelling of litre * * * liter UK US /ˈliːtər/ noun [C] US ► MEASURES LITRE(Cf. ↑litre) …   Financial and business terms

• Liter — Smn std. (19. Jh.) Entlehnung. Mit dem Hohlmaß entlehnt aus frz. litre m., das über ml. litra f. aus gr. lítra f. Pfund stammt. Dieses ist aus der gleichen Sprache entlehnt, die auch l. lībra f. Waage, Pfund geliefert hat. 1868 amtlich eingeführt …   Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen sprache

• Liter — [Aufbauwortschatz (Rating 1500 3200)] Bsp.: • 1 Liter = 1,76 Pinte (Brit) = 0,22 Gallonen (Brit) = 2,11 Pinte (Am) = 0,26 Gallonen (Am) …   Deutsch Wörterbuch

• Liter — Li ter, Litre Li tre (l[=e] t[ e]r; 277), n. [F. litre, Gr. li tra a silver coin.] A measure of capacity in the metric system, being a cubic decimeter, equal to 61.022 cubic inches, or 2.113 American pints, or 1.76 English pints. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

• Liter — (abgekürzt l. franz. litre), Einheit aller Hohlmaße im metrischen System, = 1 Kubikdezimeter oder 0,001 cbm, also 1 cbm = 1000 L. Es wird eingeteilt in 10 Deziliter zu 10 Zentiliter zu 10 Milliliter; 10 L. machen ein Dekaliter, 100 ein Hektoliter …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

• Liter — (frz. litre), abgekürzt l, im metrischen System die Einheit des Hohlmaßes, hat den Inhalt eines Kubikdezimeters, ist = 1/1000 cbm = 50,4124 alte Pariser Kubikzoll …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

• liter — 1797, from Fr. litre (1793), from litron, obsolete French measure of capacity for grain, from M.L. litra, from Gk. litra pound, apparently from the same Sicilian Italic source as L. libra …   Etymology dictionary