# Latitude

Earth's graticule. The vertical lines from pole to pole are lines of constant longitude, or meridians. The circles parallel to the equator are lines of constant latitude, or parallels. The graticule shows the latitude and longitude of points on the surface. In this example meridians are spaced at 6° intervals and parallels at 4° intervals.

In geography, latitude is a coordinate that specifies the northsouth position of a point on the surface of the Earth or another celestial body. Latitude is given as an angle that ranges from –90° at the south pole to 90° at the north pole, with 0° at the Equator. Lines of constant latitude, or parallels, run east–west as circles parallel to the equator. Latitude and longitude are used together as a coordinate pair to specify a location on the surface of the Earth.

On its own, the term "latitude" normally refers to the geodetic latitude as defined below. Briefly, the geodetic latitude of a point is the angle formed between the vector perpendicular (or normal) to the ellipsoidal surface from the point, and the plane of the equator.