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*x-axis*# x-axis vs. y-axis

## x-axis vs. y-axis: What's the difference?

In a* Cartesian plane*, the *x-axis* and *y-axis* are perpendicular to each other. The *y-axis* is vertical, while the *x-axis* is horizontal. In scientific graphing, the terms often are used to describe the two axes of a plot. Independent variables are charted on the *x-axis*, and dependent variables on the *y-axis*.

[ eks-ak-sis ]

noun,

- (in a plane Cartesian coordinate system) the axis, usually horizontal, along which the abscissa is measured and from which the ordinate is measured.
- (in a three-dimensional Cartesian coordinate system) the axis along which values of x are measured and at which both y and z equal zero.

[ wahy-ak-sis ]

noun,

- (in a plane Cartesian coordinate system) the axis, usually vertical, along which the ordinate is measured and from which the abscissa is measured.
- (in a three-dimensional Cartesian coordinate system) the axis along which values of y are measured and at which both x and z equal zero.