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Clarifying measurement terminology

September 1st, 2008 / By: / Ask the Experts

Question: What’s the difference between a linear yard and a lineal yard?

Answer: Our guess is that someone is using the word “lineal” when they really mean “linear.”

“Lineal” is typically used in a genealogical context, meaning someone is descended in a direct line from a particular ancestor. “Linear” is a simple, one dimensional unit of measurement. In other words, in the case of “linear yard,” it means the length of the fabric, without accounting for the width.

Juli Case is IFAI’s information and technical services manager.

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