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Mercator projection

or Mercator's projection

noun, Cartography.
a conformal projection on which any rhumb line is represented as a straight line, used chiefly in navigation, though the scale varies with latitude and areal size and the shapes of large areas are greatly distorted.
Origin of Mercator projection
First recorded in 1660-70 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for Mercator projection
Historical Examples
  • There may be found numerous references to the principle underlying the Mercator projection.

    Terrestrial and Celestial Globes Vol I Edward Luther Stevenson
  • The Arcano del Mare, 1646, was the first marine atlas in which all the maps were drawn on the Mercator projection.

    Nautical Charts G. R. Putnam
  • For the plotting of original surveys the Mercator projection is not suited and is not used, for the reasons above mentioned.

    Nautical Charts G. R. Putnam
  • You already know something about the Mercator projection and a Mercator chart.

    Lectures in Navigation Ernest Gallaudet Draper
British Dictionary definitions for Mercator projection

Mercator projection

an orthomorphic map projection on which parallels and meridians form a rectangular grid, scale being exaggerated with increasing distance from the equator Also called Mercator's projection
Word Origin
C17: named after G. Mercator
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Mercator projection in Science
Mercator projection  

A cylindrical projection of the Earth's surface developed by Gerhardus Mercator. As in other such projections, the areas farther from the equator appear larger, making the polar regions greatly distorted. However, the faithful representation of direction in a Mercator projection makes it ideal for navigation. See more at cylindrical projection.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Mercator projection in Culture
Mercator projection [(muhr-kay-tuhr)]

A way of showing the sphere of the Earth on the flat surface of a map. Because this projection is centered on the equator, in order to maintain the correct shape of the features shown, the spacing between the parallels of latitude increases with the increasing distance from the equator. This tends to enlarge the size of those features located nearer the poles, such as Greenland or New Zealand, giving a false picture of their relative size.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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