Again, in direct-fired furnaces there are commonly seven or eight rows of retorts, one above another, so that to serve the upper rows the workman must stand upon a table, where he is exposed to the full heat of the furnace and requires a helper to wait upon him.
For the future avoidance of any such scenes a cunning workman of Cornwall offered to make a table which should seat 1600 knights and more, and at which all should be equal.
On closely examining Layamon's version it seems probable that he had in his mind not merely a circular, but a turning table; he gives it as ground for the quarrel that all the knights wished to sit within; at the table the Cornish workman will make none shall be left without, but they shall sit "without and within, man against man."
In 1742 a workman named Thomas Bolsover was mending the handle of a knife made of silver and copper, when, accidentally overheating it, he caused the metals to fuse and flow, and found that as a consequence the silver adhered to the copper as a thin coating.
They must therefore have been marked by a workman using a cubit of 25.13.