Peasant ploughing
Wikimedia Commons

An oxgang is an old measurement of land area, one eighth of a ploughland or carucate, which was the area that could be ploughed by a team of eight oxen in one year. Also known by its latinised name of bovata, an oxgang was the amount of land held by a man who could contribute one ox to the cooperative venture.[1] In that respect it differed from the earlier Anglo-Saxon unit of measurement known as the hide, which was the amount of land sufficient to support one free peasant – a ceorl, sometimes rendered as churl – and his family.[2]

The area of an oxgang, although it may have varied across the country, is generally considered to have been about 15 acres (6 ha).[3]