Mile facts for kids
A mile is a unit of length. There are many different kinds of mile but mile on its own usually means the statute mile.
In the US and the UK the word mile usually means the statute mile.
The nautical mile is used for sea or air travel.
The nautical mile was originally defined as one minute of arc along a line of longitude of the Earth. There are 60 minutes of arc in one degree or arc (60' = 1°). So there were 10,800 nautical miles from the North Pole to the South Pole.
Now the nautical mile is defined as 1,852 metres.
1 nautical mile = 1,852 metres (by definition) ≈ 6,076 feet ≈ 1.151 statute miles
The speed of a ship that travels one nautical mile in one hour is called one knot
The mile was first used by the Romans. It comes from the Latin phrase mille passus (plural: milia passuum). This means "one thousand paces". A pace is the distance each foot moves when taking one step.
1 Roman mile = 1,000 Roman paces (by definition) ≈ 1,479 metres ≈ 4,852 feet
Different miles have been used throughout history in various parts of the world. In Norway and Sweden, for example, a mil is a unit of length which is equal to 10 kilometres.
Images for kids
The remains of the Golden Milestone, the zero-mile marker of the Roman road network, in the Roman Forum
Edinburgh's "Royal Mile"—running from the castle to Holyrood Abbey—is roughly a Scots mile long.
Scalebar on a 16th-century map made by Mercator. The scalebar is expressed in "Hours walking or common Flemish miles", and includes three actual scales: small, medium and big Flemish miles.
Various historic miles and leagues from an 1848 German textbook, given in feet, metres, and fractions of a "degree of meridian"
- In Spanish: Milla