What is the Difference Between Width and Length?

The Difference Between Width and Length is that length is the longest dimension of an entity, according to the International System of Quantities. In contrast, width, also known as breadth, is the interval from one side to the other measured over a specific entity whose lengths form 90° angles with the shorter sides (as in a rectangle).

In the study of geometry, the vital parameters that help delineate patterns are length and width. There is often some uncertainty in differentiating length from the width. The various explanations regarding the meaning of the two measures are mainly determined by the place where it is learned.

In mathematics, most students are educated on how the longest side of a parallelogram is its length. At the same time, the width would be its shortest side regardless of whether or not the longest side is the horizontal side of the vertical side. However, many people have perceived that the width is usually at the height of the horizontal side, while the length is mostly vertical.

Since length and width are primary one-dimensional units, the only difference would be interpretation. The two terms’ length and width are indistinguishable because they are practically in the same plane.

However, the longer of the two measurements is generally known as length. The term length can be used to express a time interval, such as how long a specific task will take, and can also indicate distance. Although many length units are used, the most fundamental in SI units of measure is the meter.

Comparison table Between Width and Length





Length is considered the most important measurement since length defines the length of an entity.

Width is also considered an equally important measure that defines how wide an entity is.


Length is defined as the distance along the longest dimension and the two ends of an object/line.

Width can be defined as the measurement of an object from side to side.


The longest side of an object will be considered the result of a scale.

The shortest side of an object will be considered as a result of a scale.

three-dimensional model

The vertical side of an object is the result of calculating the length of a three-dimensional model.

The horizontal side of an object is the result of calculating the width of a three-dimensional model.


Length explains the extension of an object.

Width explains the intensity of an object.

What is the length?

The Length refers to measuring an object’s dimensions from one end to another. Interval time first originated in the German language and was later introduced in the English language as Length, and from there, the word ‘length’ gained the concept of measurement. The Length is used to estimate the distance.

The International System of Quantities defines Length as the quantity used to calculate the distance between dimensions. The base unit of Length, given by the International System of Units, is the meter (m), and today it is defined in terms of the speed of light, which is 300 million meters per second. The millimeter, centimetre, and kilometre, which are forms of meter, can also be thought of as units of Length. There are various other Length units such as foot, yard, mile, etc.

Einstein’s special relativity showed that Length could not be constant for all reference frames. Therefore, the Length may depend on the perspective of the observer. The line has a dimension, and the only measure is the length of a line. The Length of a circle is its circumference.

A rectangle has two measurements; one of these measurements is the Length, and the other is the width. Length can also be used as a geometric measure. In Euclidean geometry, Length is calculated using the straight lines of an object; for example, the perimeter of a polygon can be calculated as the sum of the Length of its sides, while in other geometries, Length can be estimated along curved paths and these are called geodesics.

What is the width?

Width, also known as width, refers to the extent/distance of an object from side to side. The width is also considered a meaningful measurement as it continues as an interval of time. The width is considered the shortest estimate of a factor. The width can be used to see how wide an object can be or how long merchandise can be. The most important unit used to measure width is the meter (m).

Very small distances can be estimated using a millimeter (mm), and kilometers (km) are used as units to calculate a width for large distances.

The width is the horizontal side of the plane. In this case, we would say that the rectangle’s width is the shorter of the two sides. The width is said to be unambiguous. The width can also mean telling someone how wide an object is.

If an object has two dimensions, then the Length and width are needed to calculate the area or perimeter of the object; for example, a rectangle has two dimensions, i.e., a vertical and horizontal plane. When one tries to quantize an object, he starts by finding out the object’s width. The smallest distance from an object is considered the width of the object. Width always measures the intensity with which an object is viewed.

Main Difference Between Width and Length

  • Length refers to the distance between two ends of an object. The width refers to measuring the width or how wide the object is.
  • Length can be measured in geometry by considering the longest side of the object. The width can be measured in geometry by considering the smallest side of the object.
  • The Length of a three-dimensional model can be measured by considering the vertical side of the object. The width of a three-dimensional model can be measured by considering the horizontal side of the object.
  • The main factor in measuring Length is considering how long an object is. The main factor in measuring width is considering the intensity of an object.
  • Length can be used to estimate the length of a feature. Width can be used to estimate how wide an entity is.


In geometry, when we estimate the periphery of a feature, we always look at the two most essential parameters: its Length and its width. Both measures are not the same and require certain details before concluding which term is applicable for which side of the entity.

This article presents these same details and highlights the meaning of both terms along with their characteristics. Discuss how Length is referred to as the greatest distance of measurement from one side to another side and how width refers to how wide a feature from one side to the other side estimates across the feature at 90 angles to the side. longer, that is, the Length.

Courtesy: Queens College



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