metric unit of weight," 1797, from French gramme (18c.), from Late Latin gramma "small weight," from Greek gramma "small weight," originally "letter of the alphabet," from stem of graphein "to draw, write" (see -graphy). Adopted into English about two years before it was established in France as a unit in the metric system by law of 19 frimaire, year VIII (1799).
A unit of mass in the metric system, equal to 0.001 kilogram or 0.035 ounce. See Table at measurement.
[gräm, grăm]Hans Christian Joachim1853-1938
Danish bacteriologist who in 1884 developed a method of staining bacteria, called Gram's stain or Gram's dye, that is used to identify and classify bacteria, often from samples of infected body fluids. The classification, called gram-negative or gram-positive, can be useful in the initial selection of antibiotics to treat the infection.