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acre, n.

Quotations:
Pronunciation:  Brit. /ˈeɪkə/ , U.S. /ˈeɪkər/
Forms:  eOE aecer, eOE ecyr (Kentish), OE accr- (inflected form, Northumbrian), OE acr- (inflected form), OE æþer (transmission error), OE–eME æccer (rare), OE–eME æcer, OE–eME æcr- (inflected form), OE–eME æcyr, OE–eME æker, OE–16 aker, OE–17 acer, lOE æcær, lOE æccr- (inflected form), lOE–eME ecer, eME aeker, eME ærcas (accusative plural, transmission error), eME eker, ME akre, ME hakere, ME–15 akere, ME–15 akir, ME–15 akyr, ME– acre, 15 acar, 15 ackre, 15 acorr, 15 akear, 15 akker, 15–16 acker, 16 accer (N. Amer.), 16 accor, 16 acur, 16 akar (Welsh English), 17 aiker, 18 aager (Irish English (Wexford)), 19– acher (regional); Eng. regional 18 yacker, 18– acker, 18– yacre; U.S. regional 18 acor, 19– achor, 19– ackre, 19– acrre, 19– akar, 19– akor; Sc. pre-17 acar, pre-17 acer, pre-17 acire, pre-17 ackar, pre-17 ackyr, pre-17 acur, pre-17 aicire, pre-17 aickar, pre-17 aicker, pre-17 aickir, pre-17 aikair, pre-17 aikar, pre-17 aikir, pre-17 aikkar, pre-17 aikker, pre-17 aikkir, pre-17 akair, pre-17 akar, pre-17 aker, pre-17 akere, pre-17 akir, pre-17 akkyr, pre-17 akre, pre-17 akyr, pre-17 akyre, pre-17 ecker, pre-17 17– acre, pre-17 17– aiker, pre-17 18 accre, pre-17 18 ackre, pre-17 18– acker, 18 awker, 19– aacre, 19– yicker. (Show Less)
Etymology:  Cognate with Old Frisian ekker  , ēker  , ikker  , akker   field, cultivated field, measure of land, Middle Dutch acker   cultivated field, measure of land (in Old Dutch only in place names; Dutch akker  ), Old Saxon akkar  , akar   field, cultivated field (Middle Low German acker  , also cultivated land collectively, measure of land), Old High German ackar  , acchar  , akar   cultivated field, field, countryside (as opposed to town) (Middle High German acker  , German Acker  ), Old Icelandic akr   cultivated land, field, cornfield (sometimes used in opposition to enclosed homefield), crop, Old Swedish aker  , akker   cultivated land, field, crop (Swedish åker  ), Old Danish akær   cultivated land (Danish ager  ), Gothic akrs   field < the same Indo-European base as classical Latin ager   piece of land, territory, country, region, farm, estate, cultivated land, soil, countryside (as opposed to town), ancient Greek ἀγρός   field, farm, cultivated land, countryside (as opposed to town), Sanskrit ajra   plain, open country, ultimately < the same Indo-European base as classical Latin agere   (see act v.), although the precise type of formation shown and the stages of its development are uncertain and disputed.
 
 
Borrowing from Germanic languages is shown by post-classical Latin acra (frequently from 11th cent. in British and continental sources; 9th cent. in a Belgian source as accrum) and Anglo-Norman and Old French, Middle French, French acre (12th cent.; now chiefly denoting either a measure of land in Normandy or the British measure); the standard modern spelling of the English word as acre rather than aker perhaps reflects the influence of French orthography.

In Old English usually a strong masculine; isolated attestations of a weak genitive singular æcran   and an apparently weak but irregular genitive plural æceran   occur, but these may be transmission errors.

 
Current standard pronunciation reflects open syllable lengthening in Middle English uninflected disyllabic forms (āker  ); regional forms such as acker   continue inflected forms that did not undergo the lengthening.
 
The word occurs early in place names, as Bean eccer   (field name), Little Chart, Kent (843; now Benacre), Acre  , Norfolk (1086; now South Acre), Benagra  , Suffolk (1086; now Benacre), etc. It has been suggested that in early settlement names the word typically refers to newly cultivated ground; see M. Gelling & A. Cole Landscape of Place-names (2000) 263–6. A few place names (all from the north-west midlands) appear to show reflexes of (irregular) Old English forms with palatalization and assibilation of the medial /k/ (compare discussion at acorn n.), as Clyuacher, south Lancashire, lit. ‘cliff acre’ (1246; 1196 as Clivercher; also Clyuaker (1246); now Cliviger), Alsacher, Cheshire, lit. ‘Ælle's acre’ (1285; 1086 as Eleacier; also Alsacre (1307); now Alsager); see further E. Ekwall in Beiblatt zur Anglia 32 (1921) 156–60, D. Mills Place-names Lancs. (1976) 40.

 1.

 a. A plot or piece of land, a field; spec. a piece of tilled or arable land. Now arch. and in proper names, as Long Acre.church, God's acre, etc.: see the first element.

OE   Old Eng. Martyrol. (Julius) 8 Oct. 227   Hio ða het hyre men on niht þa lichoman forstelan ond bebyrgan on hyre æcere.
OE   West Saxon Gospels: Matt. (Corpus Cambr.) xxvii. 8   Forþam is se æcer [L. ager] gehaten acheldemagh, þæt is on ure geþeode blodes æcyr [OE Lindisf. lond blodes, OE Rushw. blodes lond, c1200 Hatton blodes aker; L. ager sanguinis].
OE   tr. Pseudo-Apuleius Herbarium (Vitell.) (1984) vi. 50   Ðeos wyrt þe man uiperinam & oðrum naman nædderwyrt nemneð bið cenned on wætere & on æcerum.
lOE   Anglo-Saxon Chron. (Laud) (Peterborough contin.) anno 1130,   Man seið to biworde: hæge sitteð þa aceres dæleth.
?a1300  (▸c1250)    Prov. Hendyng (Digby) xxxix, in Anglia (1881) 4 198 (MED),   Heye he sit, þat akeres [v.r. acris] deleþ.
?a1400  (▸a1338)    R. Mannyng Chron. (Petyt 511) ii. 115   Pople with alle þe recchesse, & akres, als þei wonnen, Þorgh þer douhtinesse, þe lond þorgh þei ronnen.
c1425   Liber Monasterii de Hyda (Sawyer 865) in S. Miller Charters of New Minster, Winchester (2001) 204   Fro the lynch to the long furlang westward, than to the lytyl aker [c1425 (OE) litlan æcer; L. paruam acram] westward, fro that aker to fuldych.
1484   Caxton tr. G. de la Tour-Landry Bk. Knight of Tower (1971) lxvi. 97   A good man..named Nabor, whiche had an Aker of a vyne yerd.
1518   in W. Fraser Douglas Bk. (1885) III. 388   Our aikiris of Linlithquhow.
a1530  (▸c1425)    Andrew of Wyntoun Oryg. Cron. Scotl. (Royal) viii. 3430   The Mylnarys Akyre it callyd was: And men sayis, bath hors and man In that Akyre war lwgyd than.
1625   N. Carpenter Geogr. Delineated ii. x. 179   Some parcels of ground should as pastures be diuided from woody acres.
1691   Dryden Let. Sir G. Etherege in Hist. Adolphus 76   (Spight of all those Fable-makers) He never sow'd on Almaine Acres.
1718   Pope in tr. Homer Iliad IV. xiv. 138   There rich in Fortune's Gifts, his Acres till'd, Beheld his Vines their liquid Harvest yield.
1786   R. Burns Poems chiefly Sc. Dial. 20   A country fellow at the pleugh, His acre's till'd, he's right eneugh.
1841   H. W. Longfellow God's Acre in U.S. Mag. & Democratic Rev. Dec. 597,   I like that ancient Saxon phrase, which calls The burial-ground ‘God's-Acre’!.. This is the field and Acre of our God, This is the place where human harvests grow.
1958   B. Behan Borstal Boy (1961) iii. 233   Small Acre was a big field with trees in regular rows that seemed to stretch for miles.
1975   J. B. Keane Lett. of Matchmaker 7   If it don't come fine at all my cows and pony will walk the Long Acre trying to nose out their pick across the coming winter.
1999   Nat. Hist. Apr. 104/2   Into the untended corners of my acre crowd the old, true grasses of the hillside.

OE—1999(Hide quotations)

 
 

 b. In pl. Rhetorically: lands, fields, estates.

1697   J. S. Innocent Epicure 46   You on Paternal Acres justly got, May live, and Great Men envy at your Lot.
1781   Johnson Rowe in Pref. Wks. Eng. Poets VI. 1   His father..was the first that quitted his paternal acres to practise any art of profit.
1800   Spirit of Public Jrnls. for 1799 3 229   There was a time..when follies of rank and fortune were..as incapable of transfer as an entailed estate, and when a great man's vices and his acres were handed down alike unimpaired to his posterity.
1856   E. B. Browning Aurora Leigh viii. 357   An active poacher..tired of springeing game So long upon my acres.
1867   Trollope Last Chron. Barset II. lvii. 135   A husband with broad acres, a big house, and game preserves.
1933   H. Allen Anthony Adverse I. i. i. 11   ‘The fields here look in condition though,’ he exclaimed, ‘fine, well-tilled acres!’
1991   Times Lit. Suppl. 4/1   The aristocrat still disdainful of the tradesmen pleading bills at his door as he sells yet more of the family's broad acres.

1697—1991(Hide quotations)

 
 2.

 a. A measure of land area, originally as much as a yoke of oxen could plough in a day, later defined by English statute as an area 220 yards (40 poles) long by 22 yards (4 poles) broad (equal to 4,840 square yards, 4 roods, or approx. 4,047 square metres), or its equivalent of any shape.The relevant statutes are 5 Edw. I, 31 Edw. III, 24 Hen. VIII.
 
In many contexts now superseded by the hectare.
 
Irish, Scotch, Welsh acre, etc., and following numerals (chiefly forming compound nouns), as forty-, five-, ten-acre, etc.: see the first element.

OE   Bounds (Sawyer 1044) in J. M. Kemble Codex Diplomaticus (1846) IV. 77   An mylen be doferware broce, & seofon æceras þarto.
OE   Ælfric's Colloquy (1991) 20   Omni die debeo aratre [read arare] integrum agrum aut plus : ælce dæg ic sceal erian fulne æþer [read æcer] oþþe mare.
a1250  (▸?c1200)    Prov. Alfred (Maidstone) 99 (MED),   Þoh man hauede hundt seuenti akeres.
a1300  (▸OE)    Will of Wulfgyð (Sawyer 1535) in D. Whitelock Anglo-Saxon Wills (1930) 84   Ic yan..minen twam doytren, Gode and Bote, Sexlingham and Sumerledetune and into þare cheriche at Sumerledetune sixtene eker londes and enne eker med.
c1330   Body & Soul (Auch.) (1889) 30 (MED),   Of alle þi lond an acre or tvain.
1375   in A. H. Cooke Early Hist. Mapledurham (1925) 205 (MED),   A filde Callid Chalkespittfilde conteynyng xxvjti acris.
c1400  (▸c1378)    Langland Piers Plowman (Laud 581) (1869) B. vi. l. 4,   I haue an half acre to erye.
1466   in Manners & Househ. Expenses Eng. (1841) 326,   I have ȝeven to John Hamondes wyffe iiij. hakeres of wete.
c1503   R. Arnold Chron. f. lxvi/2,   Of what lengith Soo euer they be C.lx. perches make an akir.
1543   R. Record Ground of Artes i. sig. N.v,   A rodde of londe, whiche some call a roode, some a yarde londe, and some a farthendele... 4 farthendeles make an acre.
a1616   Shakespeare Tempest (1623) i. i. 62   Now would I give a thousand furlongs of sea for an acre of barren land.
1624   J. Smith Gen. Hist. Virginia iv. 126   English Wheat will yeeld but sixteene bushels an aker.
a1687   W. Petty Polit. Arithm. (1691) 52,   121 Irish Acres do make 196 English Statute Acres.
1790   E. Burke Refl. Revol. in France 169   Their estates were bound to the last acre.
1807   G. Crabbe Parish Reg. ii, in Poems 83   He, for his Acres few, so duly paid, That yet more Acres to his Lot were laid.
1886   E. Arnold India Revisited ix. 124   The tank covers seventy-two acres, and is one of the largest in India.
1936   Discovery Dec. 375/1   The concessional area of one million acres consisted almost entirely of virgin forest.
1989   R. Banks Affliction vii. 95   A small run-down Cape farmhouse on 125 acres of rocky overgrown scrub.
2007   Horse & Rider Oct. 162/2   The fields are divided into two paddocks of two acres.

OE—2007(Hide quotations)

 

 b. In extended use: a wide expanse; (in pl.) large quantities.

1759   tr. Helvétius De L'Esprit iv. viii. 283   Genius enlightens some acres of that immense night, which surround little minds.
1770   G. Colman Portrait ii. 16   Think of the winds in a roar, the vast, ocean Swelling, rolling, and foaming in dreadful commotion!.. For succour we cry, While nothing we spy, But mountains of water and acres of sky.
1777   Laughing Philos. 40   You will see a pudding-faced fellow with an acre of face to a mole-hill of hat.
1835   Dublin Univ. Mag. Oct. 446/1   It would take an acre of paper to tell you the wonders of this town.
1858   T. Carlyle Hist. Friedrich II of Prussia I. v. vi. 603   He..writes cunningly, acres of despatches to Prince Eugene.
1880   Catholic World Mar. 822/2   Madge and Jeanie squabbled over a pot of raspberry jam, and after smearing about an acre of table cloth with the pot's contents, were removed in sobs and disgrace.
1926   H. Crane Let. 19 June (1965) 258   Acres of man-sized leaping porpoises..that greet you in tandems.
1979   S. Brett Comedian Dies iii. 36   Elgar..wrote all this [sic] acres and acres of music and all anyone remembers is Land of Hope and bleedin' Glory.
2002   ‘H. Hill’ Flight from Deathrow xli. 240   There were just three tables, each seating two, making six diners in all, set in about an acre of stripped-pine flooring and brushed aluminium fittings.

1759—2002(Hide quotations)

 

 3. A measure of length equal to either the length or breadth of an acre, later defined by English statute respectively as 220 yards (40 poles, or approx. 200 metres) and 22 yards (4 poles, or approx. 20 metres). Cf. acre breadth n., acre brede n., acre length n. Now rare.

c1250  (▸OE)    Royal Charter: Eadwig to Nuns of Wilton (Sawyer 582) in W. de G. Birch Cartularium Saxonicum (1893) III. 84   Þanne aet þare diche ende hit byhð east aenne aeker innan Ælfheages land.
 
1523   J. Fitzherbert Bk. Husbandry (1534) C 2,   xvi. fote and a halfe, to the perche or pole, foure perches to an acre in bredth, and fortye perches to an acre in lengthe.
1535   Bible (Coverdale) 1 Sam. xiv. 14   The first slaughter that Ionathas and his wapen bearer dyd, was..with in the length of halue an aker of londe. [1611 An halfe acre of land. Marg. halfe a furrow of an acre of land.]
1601   P. Holland tr. Pliny Hist. World I. vi. vi. 118   The length of the very demie Island..is not aboue 87 miles and a halfe, and the breadth in no place lesse than two acres of land.
1809   W. Bawdwen tr. Domesday Bk. 326   Four Villanes have there one plough, and an acre of wood in length and one acre in breadth.
1881   S. Evans Evans's Leicestershire Words (new ed.) 88   Acre, this word is used as a measure of length in two distinct senses.
1904   N. & Q. 30 Apr. 354/1   Hence acre as a measure of length—and in this sense it occurs sometimes in Domesday—is the equivalent of 22 yards.

c1250—1904(Hide quotations)

 
 

4. An alleged term for: a duel fought between English and Scottish borderers. Obs.  [Probably after post-classical Latin acram committere in the Annals of Burton Abbey (1237), in which acram   probably shows a poor translation of camp n.1]

1701   W. Kennett Cowell's Interpreter sig. B3/1,   Acre, an old sort of Duel fought by single Combatants, English and Scotch, between the Frontiers of their Kingdom with Sword and Lance... The Borderers on Scotland..called such Camp-fight.., Acre-fight; and sometime simply Acre.

1701—1701(Hide quotations)

 

Compounds

 C1. With the first element in the form acre.

  acre breadth   n. chiefly regional (Sc. and north. Eng.) = acre's breadth n. at Compounds 2.

1770   Life Sir W. Wallace vii. iv. 145   Who..did retire five acre breadth and more.
1907   Scotia Lammas 212   To hing, ae breath, an acre breadth o' veil.

1770—1907(Hide quotations)

 
 

acre brede   n.  [ < acre n. + brede n.2] Obs. = acre breadth n.

[eOE   tr. Orosius Hist. (BL Add.) iv. ii. 86   On anre dune neah Romebyrig..wæs byrnende fyr up of þære eorþan, þæt on ælce healfe þæs fyres seo eorþe wæs fif æcra bræde to axan geburnen.
lOE   Bounds (Sawyer 835) in J. M. Kemble Codex Diplomaticus (1845) III. 172   Andlangas sledes syx æcera bræde, ðet up be healfan furlange be riht landmearce to abrocenan beorge.]
c1330  (▸?a1300)    Guy of Warwick (Auch.) p. 596 (MED),   Into þe feld it ȝede Þe mountaunce of an acre brede, Er þat it wald abide.
1488  (▸c1478)    Hary Actis & Deidis Schir William Wallace (Adv.) (1968–9) xi. l. 356   The worthy Scottis reryt fer on bak, Sewyn akyrbreid.
1568   Christis Kirk on Grene in W. T. Ritchie Bannatyne MS (1928) II. 264   Be ane aikerbraid it come not neir him.

c1330—1568(Hide quotations)

 

  acre-foot   n. a unit of volume equal to one acre in area and one foot in depth (approx. 43,600 cubic feet, 1200 cubic metres), typically used for water.

1889   Jrnl. Amer. Geogr. Soc. 21 143   We measure water by acre feet. This is something we devised in the last season.
1944   Jrnl. Sedimentary Petrol. 14 19/2   Between 15,500 and 11,500 acre-feet of upland soil.
2005   High Country News 21 Mar. 11/1   By the 1970s, Arizona was overdrafting its aquifers by about 2.2 million acre-feet a year.

1889—2005(Hide quotations)

 

  acre-land   n.  (a) ploughed or arable land; a piece of such land; spec. a holding or tenement, varying in extent from 8 to 20 acres according to locality; (now hist.);  (b) a piece of land consisting of one acre (obs. rare).  [Attested earlier in place names, as Akerlande, West Riding, Yorkshire (a1193; now Lower Acreland), Akerlond (field name), Alvaston and Boulton, Derbyshire (1262), although the precise sense reflected by these examples is uncertain.]

c1330   Short Metrical Chron. (Royal) l. 16 in J. Ritson Anc. Eng. Metrical Romanceës (1802) II. 270   In al this londe, On aker-lond [a1400 BL Add. acre of londe] ther nes yfounde Ne toun ne houses never on..Ah al wes wode ant wildernesse.
a1400   in 6th Rep. Royal Comm. Hist. MSS (1877) App. i. 233 (MED),   [All the customaries of the manor..of the tenure of] Worklond [and] Acrelond.
1479   in S. Tymms Wills & Inventories Bury St. Edmunds (1850) 53   Also an acre londe inclosed, late purchased of Water Dey.
c1503   R. Arnold Chron. f. lxvi/2,   Euery akir lande conteyneth C.lx. perchies.
1792   Laws Jamaica II. xiii. 259   All such lots of the said acre-land as shall be so leased by the acre, shall be leased at such annual rents, and for such term and time, as the justices, vestrymen, and churchwardens..shall think fit and proper.
a1896   W. Morris Water of Wondrous Isles (1897) i. v. 17   The kine and the goats must she milk, and plough and sow and reap the acre-land according to the seasons, and lead the beasts to the woodland pastures when their own were flooded or burned.
1969   M. D. Lobel & A. Crossley Victoria Hist. County of Oxford IX. 25/2   It was difficult to get tenants for cotlands and acrelands as late as the 1360s.

c1330—1969(Hide quotations)

 
 

acre lengh   n.  [ < acre n. + lengh n.] Obs. = acre length n.

c1440  (▸?a1400)    Morte Arthure l. 3849 (MED),   With þe lussche of þe launce he lyghte one hys schuldyrs, Ane akere-lenghe one a launde.

c1440—c1440(Hide quotations)

 
c1380   Sir Ferumbras (1879) 2770 (MED),   Þay dryuen hem aȝen an aker lengþe.
a1530  (▸c1425)    Andrew of Wyntoun Oryg. Cron. Scotl. (Royal) vii. 548   And fra it a space wes drawyn..Large thre akyre leynth off land.
1924   J. J. Taubenhaus & F. W. Mally Culture & Dis. Onion vi. 60   For the Laredo district in Texas the acre length (208 feet) is the one in most common use.

c1380—1924(Hide quotations)

 

  acre money n. now hist. and rare  (a) rent paid on a piece of land taken in from moorland or common land;  (b) Caribbean rent paid per acre for the right to work, prospect, etc., on a piece of land.

1713   G. Ritschel Acct. Certain Charities 11   In the year of our Lord 1662, Sir William Fenwick of Wallington, Baronet, did Subscribe three Pounds a Year..out of the Intack Rents, or Acre-Money, for the use of a School-Master.
1807   H. Bolingbroke Voy. to Demerary ix. 182   Another step which the governor took to harrass and exert his power over the planters, was to make an immediate demand upon them for ‘acre geldt,’ viz. acre money.
1895   Laws Brit. Guiana (Govt. Brit. Guiana) (rev. ed.) III. 384   The acre money payable annually in respect of all lands aback of any plantation in cultivation beyond the second depth granted to or occupied or enjoyed by the proprietor of such plantation shall be at the rate of three stivers per acre.
1955   Caribbean Q. 4 139   The planter class..petitioned Bathurst against a proclamation issued in September, 1822, calling..for the recovery of this acre-money debt.
1980   Econ. Hist. Rev. 33 62   Such encroachments were so usual that they were sometimes given legal standing by the payment of ‘acre money’ to the lord of the manor.

1713—1980(Hide quotations)

 
 

  acre shot   n.  [ < acre n. + shot n.1 24] a payment or charge rated at so much per acre.

1585   Act 27 Eliz. xxiv. §1. 3   Such of the said Sea-banks as are not maintained..at the charge of any Township or by Acre-shot or any other common charge.
1662   W. Dugdale Hist. Imbanking & Drayning Fens 348/2   They setled an Acre-shot of six pence the Acre, for defraying the charge thereof.
1738   Bill for Draining & Preserv. Cawdle Fen, Waterden & Redmoor 4   Forasmuch as the said Money and Acre Shots so to be rated, levied, collected and gathered by such Receiver or Receivers will not at present be sufficient for making such Cuts [etc.].
1798   Particulars Freehold Estate near Chelmsford, in Essex 5 (table)    Twenty Acre Shot.
1827   W. Watson Hist. Acct. Wisbech 198   The ten men and inhabitants began to extend their duties, by placing out poor children apprentices, and even made orders for raising certain acre shots and payments of country taxes.
1973   Geogr. Jrnl. 139 194   Acreshots and rates were often unpaid.
2004   Econ. News (Nexis) 11 May,   In particular, it concerns with profit taxes, private individuals tax, donors tax, death duties, acre shots and water charge.

1585—2004(Hide quotations)

 
 C2. With the first element in the genitive (acre's).

  acre's breadth   n. the breadth of an acre; 4 poles or 22 yards; cf. acre breadth n. at Compounds 1.

1703   tr. U. Chevreau Hist. World IV. viii. v. 454   Distant from the Walls about an Acre's breadth.
1800   Wordsworth in Wordsworth & S. T. Coleridge Lyrical Ballads (ed. 2) II. 27   What a feast..To see an acre's breadth of that wide cliff One roaring cataract.
1861   J. Mackenzie Our Country xxvii. 136   The arrow misses him a whole acre's breadth.
2009   A. Williams in N. Fryde & D. Reitz Walls, Ramparts, & Lines Demarcation 50 (note)    Four poles made up an acre's breadth (22 modern yards) and ten acres made up a furlong (220 modern yards).

1703—2009(Hide quotations)

 

  acre's length   n. the length of an acre; 40 poles, 220 yards, or a furlong; cf. acre length n. at Compounds 1.

c1380   Sir Ferumbras (1879) 971 (MED),   Þe frensche men þai made reculle wel an akers lengþe.
1609   P. Erondelle tr. M. Lescarbot Nova Francia xi. 68   Far off we saw other great fishes, which did shew, out of the water, aboue halfe an akers length of their backes.
1815   ‘J. Mathers’ Hist. Mr. John Decastro & Brother Bat II. xi. 237   You will get such a name, if you have it not already, that not a man of them all will come within an acre's length of you.
1914   H. E. Seebohm in F. Seebohm Customary Acres Pref. p. vii,   For practice with the longbow, Henry VIII decreed that the shortest butts should be a furlong—eleven score—or exactly the acre's length.
2010   A. J. Lagana Me Island ii. xxxi. 453   About an acre's length off to the eastern side, was a modest one story building.

c1380—2010(Hide quotations)