International Date Line

International Date Line

Imaginary line from the North Pole to the South Pole that arbitrarily separates each calendar day from the next. It corresponds along most of its length to the 180th meridian of longitude but deviates to the east through the Bering Strait to avoid dividing Siberia and then deviates to the west to include the Aleutian Islands with Alaska. South of the Equator, another eastward deviation allows certain island groups to have the same day as New Zealand. The date line is a consequence of the worldwide use of timekeeping systems arranged so that local noon corresponds approximately to the time at which the Sun crosses the local meridian of longitude. See also standard time.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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