Find the word definition


n. 1 (context: historical) An Ottoman Turkish unit of surface area nominally equal to 1,600 square (Turkish) paces but actually varied at a provincial and local level according to land quality to accommodate its colloquial sense of the amount of land able to be plowed in a day, roughly equivalent to the Byzantine stremma or English acre. 2 A modern Turkish unit of surface area equal to a decare (1000 m²), equivalent to the modern Greek stremma. 3 various other units in other areas of the former Ottoman Empire, usually equated to the decare but sometimes varying (as in Iraq, where it is 2500 m²).


A dunam (; ), also known as a donum or dunum and as the old, Turkish, or Ottoman stremma, was the Ottoman unit of area equivalent to the Greek stremma or English acre, representing the amount of land that could be ploughed by a team of oxen in a day. The legal definition was "forty standard paces in length and breadth", but its actual area varied considerably from place to place, from a little more than 900 m² in Ottoman Palestine to around 2500 m² in Iraq.

The unit is still in use in many areas previously ruled by the Ottomans, although the new or metric dunam has been redefined as exactly one decare (1000 m²), like the modern Greek royal stremma.

Usage examples of "dunam".

You pay eighty marks and they plant a dunam of land for you with olives, oranges, almonds or citrons.

Only now, it was misery tempered with growing fear as they drew nearer and nearer their goalthe small Field Magi settlement of Dunam north of the border of the Outland, about one hundred miles from the sea coast.

Riding swiftly, their black cloaks billowing in the gusts like the sails of a ghostly armada, the bandits swept down upon the village of Dunam, intending to strike them in the evening when, worn out from their long labors in the fields, the magi were settling down to rest.