Why Do Maps Always Show the North Pole At the Top and What Does the Word Hemisphere Mean In Greek?

Most maps show the North Pole at the top not for any good reason, it has become a convention.

It’s just been the way most map makers through time, most of whom have lived in the Northern Hemisphere, have shown the world on paper.

Many common geographic terms are are derived from ancient Greek words.

For example, the word hemisphere means half a globe.

Thus the Northern Hemisphere refers to the northern half of the earth, the Southern Hemisphere means the southern half, and the Eastern and Western Hemispheres refer to the eastern and western halves of the globe.

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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