Ecuador line

The equator is the line that divides the planet earth into two hemispheres, the north and the south. These lines are also known as the parallel of origin and whose orientation is from east to west, which decreases until it becomes a point at the poles. It was from the equator that it was established 90 degrees north (+90) and south (-90).

The term equator comes from the Latin “aequator” and its meaning is equalizer. Its origin comes from aequitas which is (equity), (the diphthong ae was pronounced e in low Latin) and is part of a fairly broad group of words, which maintains its original meaning constant.

The first Geodesic Mission to measure the planet arrived at the Royal Court of Quito in 1736 and was made up of the French Pedro Bouger, Luis Godin and Carlos María de la Condamine, as well as the Spaniards Jorge Juan and Antonio de Ulloa and the native of lands Ecuadorian Vicente Maldonado. All of them tried to scientifically prove the roundness of the Earth.

After the visit of the Mission, the studies lasted nine years, the lands around Quito began to be called “Lands of the equator”, referring to the parallel aequator that divides the planet into two hemispheres. Then later a second mission arrived on Ecuadorian soil in 1802, led by the Frenchman Charles Perrier and established in the region and corroborated the data obtained by the first group of researchers.

After several investigations were carried out, it was established that the country Ecuador owes its name to parallel zero, called Ecuador. On the other hand, it can also be established that the zero parallel does not owe its name to the country.

Recent studies, made with satellite technology and the use of GPS, revealed that the zero parallel (Latitude 0º 0′ 00″) is located about 244 meters further south from where the Pichincha obelisk is located. Now the new half of the world is in Quito but it is represented today by a huge sundial, located in the so-called Qu project.