What is a "handful"?

This expression has been used in various contexts during last few weeks, and we decided to enlighten this problem slightly from the physical point of view. It all began with the statement of D. Velickovic, Chancellor of Belgrade University, on the RTS that there was a "handful of students and pupils..." gathering at Plato. If we accept the expression "handful" in the meaning it has had until today, then all those who have participated in these gatherings know that this statement is completely false. But what was said - was said, and there is nothing we can do about it. so, to harmonize the above mentioned and similar statements with the facts we shall try to explain this term a little better.

So let us make the following definition:
-A "handful" is a unit of measure for a quantity of living creatures of the same kind.
-One "handful" is approximately equivalent to the quantity of some 20,000 of the above mentioned creatures.

Let us give some examples in order to ensure better understanding of the mentioned definition: the Crvena Zvezda (Red Star)-Barcelona football match was attended by some 4 handfuls of spectators; Belgrade University has some 3 handfuls of students; there are as many as 50,000 Chinese.

This kind of a definition of the term certainly makes the statements of the authorities and of the media more acceptable.

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