a Russian unit of land.

Known from the end of the 15th century, the desiatina was originally measured as two chetverts (1.092 hectares) and consisted of a square with sides measuring one-tenth of a

verst (0.10668 km), the square being 2,500 square sazhens (1 sazhen’ = 213.36 cm). In a 1753 decree concerning land boundaries, the official desiatina was defined as 2,400 square sazhens (1.0925 hectares). From the 18th through the early 20th century, there also existed the “household” or “oblique” desiatina (80 × 40 = 3,200 square sazhens), the “household circle” desiatina (60 × 60 = 3,600 square sazhens), the “hundred” desiatina (100 × 100 = 10,000 square sazhens), the “melon field” (80 × 10 = 800 square sazhens), and others. After the October Revolution, with the adoption of the metric system of measurement, the use of the desiatina was limited by a decree of Sept. 14, 1918, of the Sovnarkom (Council of People’s Commissars) of the USSR; since Sept. 1, 1927, the use of the measure has been prohibited.


Kamentsova, E. I., and N. V. Ustiugov. Russkaia metrologiia. Moscow, 1965.
References in periodicals archive ?
We bought an abandoned coke factory in Donez Basin, rented about 2000 desiatina [ca.
25) It fixed the land tax at 8 rubles per desiatina under American cotton and 6 rubles for local cotton varieties.
26) This amounted to about a 50 percent discount, also because of the low assumed yield of 30 poods per desiatina (1.
27) They were paying up to 24 rubles per desiatina under cotton, according to a later testimony (RGIA f.
72) Prices of raw cotton (syrets) in Turkestan, cotton yield (lint, volakno) since 1907, and lint to raw cotton ratios are from Iuferev, Khlopkovodstvo, 150, 106 (referred to Fergana; we assume a 20 poods yield per desiatina for the years before 1907, which is low), 139; wheat yield (40 poods per desiatina) and prices of wheat (1894, on Avval-Uzbek, Margelan district) from Palen, Pozemel 'no-podatnoe delo, 173, 178.
Moreover, since one of the medieval Russian terms to describe a piece of land was desiatina, or "one-tenth," the ten units of coins laid down by Peter might have been connected with the size of the plot he was buying, although no specifics regarding the actual size of the area are mentioned in the text.
62) For the term desiatina, see Blum, Lord and Peasant, 77.
34) If there were no old residents (starozhily) on the estate, Russian desiatinas were used instead of obser.
Vodarskii estimates that about one-third (27 million) of the 81 million desiatinas of land that belonged to nobles at the end of the 18th century had been illegally seized.
The size of a Swedish obs was very close to the size of a Novgorod obzha at the end of the 16th century, 15 desiatinas in three fields.
Other historians estimate illegally seized lands at 50-70 million desiatinas.
Big landed estates (57) (up to 500-600 desiatinas, or 1,350-1,620 acres) in the possession of local nobles--some of them belonging to notable and ancient Georgian (Tavad and Aznaur) clans--were classified as miri lands.