AskDefine | Define meridional

Dictionary Definition

meridional adj
1 of or relating to a meridian
2 located in the south or characteristic of southern people or places

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Etymology

pertaining to the sun's position at noon, from meridionel, southern, from meridionalis, from meridianus, of midday, southern.

Adjective

  1. Along a north-south direction, or relative to a meridian; or relating to meridians or a meridian.
  2. Located in the south; southern; or "of the south" (opposite: septentrional, "of the north").
  3. Of or characteristic of southern areas or people.

Noun

  1. An inhabitant of a southern region, especially the south of France.

Spanish

Adjective

  1. southern

Synonyms

Extensive Definition

The terms zonal and meridional are used to describe directions on a globe. Zonal means "along a latitude circle" or "in the west-east direction"; while meridional means "along a meridian" or "in the north-south direction".
These terms are often used in the atmospheric and earth sciences to describe global phenomena, such as "meridional wind flow", or "zonal temperature". (Strictly speaking, zonal means more than simply a direction as it also implies a degree of localization in the meridional direction, so that the phenomenon in question is localized to a zone of the planet.)
For vector fields (such as wind speed), the zonal component (or x-coordinate) is denoted as u, while the meridional component (or y-coordinate) is denoted as v.
meridional in Galician: Meridional
meridional in Portuguese: Meridional
meridional in French: Méridional
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