Longitude Wiki - What is the longitude?

Longitude (, AU and UK also ), is a geographic coordinate that specifies the east–west position of a point on the Earth's surface. It is an angular measurement, usually expressed in degrees and denoted by the Greek letter lambda (λ). Meridians (lines running from pole to pole) connect points with the same longitude. By convention, one of these, the Prime Meridian, which passes through the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, England, was allocated the position of 0° longitude. The longitude of other places is measured as the angle east or west from the Prime Meridian, ranging from 0° at the Prime Meridian to +180° eastward and −180° westward. Specifically, it is the angle between a plane through the Prime Meridian and a plane through both poles and the location in question. (This forms a right-handed coordinate system with the z-axis (right hand thumb) pointing from the Earth's center toward the North Pole and the x-axis (right hand index finger) extending from the Earth's center through the Equator at the Prime Meridian.) A location's north–south position along a meridian is given by its latitude, which is approximately the angle between the local vertical and the equatorial plane. If the Earth were perfectly spherical and radially homogeneous, then the longitude at a point would be equal to the angle between a vertical north–south plane through that point and the plane of the Greenwich meridian. Everywhere on Earth the vertical north–south plane would contain the Earth's axis. But the Earth is not radially homogeneous and has rugged terrain, which affect gravity and so can shift the vertical plane away from the Earth's axis. The vertical north–south plane still intersects the plane of the Greenwich meridian at some angle; that angle is the astronomical longitude, calculated from star observations. The longitude shown on maps and GPS devices is the angle between the Greenwich plane and a not-quite-vertical plane through the point; the not-quite-vertical plane is perpendicular to the surface of the spheroid chosen to approximate the Earth's sea-level surface, rather than perpendicular to the sea-level surface itself..

What does the word longitude mean? Find synonyms, antonyms and the meaning of the word longitude in our free online dictionary! Find words starting with longitude and anagrams of longitude.

Definitions of "longitude"

  • Angular distance on the earth's surface, measured east or west from the prime meridian at Greenwich, England, to the meridian passing through a position, expressed in degrees (or hours), minutes, and seconds. noun
  • Celestial longitude. noun
  • Angular distance measured west or east of the prime meridian. noun
  • Any imaginary line perpendicular to the equator and part of a great circle passing through the North Pole and South Pole. noun
  • Length. noun
  • adjective
  • Length; measure or distance along the longest line; -- distinguished from breadth or thickness; ; rare now, except in a humorous sense. noun
  • The arc or portion of the equator intersected between the meridian of a given place and the meridian of some other place from which longitude is reckoned, as from Greenwich, England, or sometimes from the capital of a country, as from Washington or Paris. The longitude of a place is expressed either in degrees or in time noun
  • The distance in degrees, reckoned from the vernal equinox, on the ecliptic, to a circle at right angles to the ecliptic passing through the heavenly body whose longitude is designated. noun
  • noun
  • Length; measure along the longest line. noun
  • In geography, the angle at the pole contained between two meridians, one of which, called the first or prime meridian, passes through some conventional point from which the angle is measured. noun
  • In astronomy, the arc of the ecliptic measured eastward from the vernal equinoctial point to the foot of the circle of latitude drawn through the object, as a star or other point on the sphere whose position is in question. See circle of latitudes, under circle. noun
  • the angular distance between a point on any meridian and the prime meridian at Greenwich noun

The word "longitude" in example sentences

Kerguelen himself only says that it is about 68° of E. longitude, _par_ 68° _de longitude_.. [A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 15 Forming A Complete History Of The Origin And Progress Of Navigation, Discovery, And Commerce, By Sea And Land, From The Earliest Ages To The Present Time]

In the days before global positioning satellites, a chronometer - a super-accurate clock - was used to help ascertain longitude on the seas.. [The meaningful sounds that signal the end of a military day]

He tells a story of how a clock maker invented the modern system of latitute (as in longitude and latitude), and the moral of the story is that time is the archival system for the measurement (and thus understanding) of space, and that time is also the archival system for the measurement (and thus the understanding) of music (rhythm).. [Cooperative Blog » 2008 » October » 23]

I took a new reading of latitude and longitude from the driveway of the campground and adjusted my database (it is Latitude: +42.04159, Longitude: -71.28098, in case you are keeping track).. [In GPS We Trust]

And the third time he mentioned the word longitude, I thought, ` He's read my book and he liked it. '. [Longitude: The True Story of a Lone Genius Who Solved the Greatest Scientific Problem of His Time]

And so I started to read that review and I noticed the word longitude came up very soon.. [Longitude: The True Story of a Lone Genius Who Solved the Greatest Scientific Problem of His Time]

This noon she was eight miles east of yesterday's position, yet to-day's position, in longitude, was within. [Chapter 43]

But, between the longitude of Hilo and 128 degrees west longitude is a difference of twenty-seven degrees, or, roughly, sixteen hundred miles.. [Chapter 9]

The rest of the story of the telegraphic longitude is short.. [The Reminiscences of an Astronomer]

The timezones of the world are separated by 15 degrees of longitude, so a 4 hour difference between high noon in the Atlantic and 4: 00 pm Universal Time meant that my longitude was approximately 4×15 = 60 degrees west.. [Blog Fiction | Sci-Fi | Bare Horizon | Station151]

The longitude is the best guide, or, in the absence of observation, perhaps the angles contained by the extremes of land will be serviceable.. [Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa]

It would give the island 2300 leagues of longitude, that is from east to west.. [History of the Incas]

The discovery of the latitude is easily effected by the quadrant, but the longitude is the difficulty.. [Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine — Volume 55, No. 342, April, 1844]

What is familiarly known as longitude is really the difference in time, east or west, from a line passing through the north and south poles of the earth; and the middle of the great transit circle is the Royal. [Scientific American Supplement, No. 358, November 11, 1882]

Germany, in every latitude and _with_ a good deal; they are, however, defective in longitude, which is remarkable, when we consider how they will protract their cases.. [The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 08, No. 50, December, 1861]

To ascertain the longitude was a more difficult matter.. [Jack in the Forecastle or, Incidents in the Early Life of Hawser Martingale]

Longitude Translates

TurkishLongitude English to Turkish Translate
i. boylam; astr. tul.i. boylam; astr. tul.

Longitude on Social Media

Longitude Comments

Longitude Videos

Determine Longitude
Determine Longitude
The Clock That Changed the World (BBC History of the World)
The Clock That Changed the World (BBC History of the World)
Latitude and Longitude
Latitude and Longitude

Longitude Images

longitude image
longitude image
longitude image
longitude image

News about longitude


Longitude Word Data

  • Pronunciations(lŏnˈjĭ-to͞odˌ, -tyo͞odˌ, lônˈ-)
  • Character9
  • Hyphenation lon gi tude


No longitude equivalents found!
Memory Professor


The universe is transformation; our life is what our thoughts make it. (Marcus Aurelius )
Online IQ Test