The metric system is the basis for all surface dimensions valid worldwide today. Furthermore, in many European countries, some of the very old surface dimensions are still in use. In viticulture, hectares (Hectar) are common in Europe, in the Anglo-American area mostly acres for the size of vineyards. The old area measurements used to be based on the use of land and soil. The designations or sizes were based on the work done - whether a vineyard was dug up, a field sown or ploughed, or a meadow mowed. The area that a man could plough over with a spade in a vineyard in one day resulted in a grave. The morning and the yoke corresponded to the size of an area of arable land that could be ploughed over in one morning. One day's mowing or man's mowing was the equivalent of the area that a mower could mow in one day.
In addition to the amount of work, sowing and harvesting were also used as criteria for determining the area. In the case of arable land, it was the quantity of seed given by a measure (Metzen, Mutt, Star), in the case of meadows it was the unit of yield achieved (Fuder, Hayuder). The area sizes were often different and varied from region to region. They were not exact sizes but rough approximations. Even within one country there was no great need for standardisation, as land transport was handled locally. Only towards the end of the 18th century were precisely measured sizes based on standard dimensions introduced. Before the introduction of the metric system, the square fathom was one such size.