"Filiere." Miss F. Frances Lambert. The Hand-book of Needlework. New York: Wiley & Putnam, 1842.
Miss Lambert describes the filiere, or gauge, "as a steel instrument with graduated notches round its edges, distinguished by different figures. It is used by wire-drawers for ascertaining the sizes of their wires, and is applied in a similar manner, for measuring the diameters of netting and knitting needles; thus -- when speaking of the relative size of these needles, they are frequently designated by their corresponding numbers; but, as has been before observed, there appears to be no universal standard."