Which Is The Second Largest Continent In The World

Which Is The Second Largest Continent In The World – An animated, color-coded map showing the different continents. Depending on direction and structure, some continents may merge or split.

A continent is one of several large geographical areas. Continents are usually identified by inversions rather than strict criteria. A continent can be a region or a very large piece of land, such as Asia or Europe. Because of this, the number of continents varies; Seven or less, because four geographical areas are generally considered continents. In plain language, many countries recognize the seven regions as continents. In order of largest to smallest area, these seven regions are Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Antarctica, Europe and Australia.

Which Is The Second Largest Continent In The World

Which Is The Second Largest Continent In The World

Marked differences and some continents unite some of these regions; Examples include connecting North America and South America to the Americas, Asia and Europe to Eurasia, and Africa, Asia and Europe to Afro-Eurasia.

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Sea islands are often grouped together with adjacent continents to divide the entire world’s land into geographic regions. Under this plan, several Pacific island nations and territories are merged with mainland Australia to form the geographic region of Oceania.

In geology, a continent is defined as “one of Earth’s largest land masses, including dry land and continental shelves”.

Geographic continents correspond to large areas of continental crust found on tectonic plates, but also include smaller areas of land, such as Madagascar, commonly known as subcontinents. Continental crust exists only on Earth.

The idea of ​​continental drift gained acceptance in the 20th century, asserting that today’s continents were formed by the breakup of a major continent (Pangaea) that formed millions of years ago.

Continent Africa Map Stock Vector. Illustration Of World

In contrast, continents are “imagined as vast, contiguous, uneven land masses, separated by large bodies of water”.

In modern schemes with five or more recognized continents, at least one pair of continents is connected in some way to a country. The “large” criterion results in an arbitrary classification: Greenland, with an area of ​​2,166,086 square kilometers (836,330 sq mi), is considered the world’s largest island, while Australia, with 7,617,930 square kilometers (2,941,300 sq mi). square miles), considered the smallest continent.

All of the world’s landmasses have shores on a single, continuous Earth’s ocean, which is divided into a number of large oceans and continents by various geographic parameters.

Which Is The Second Largest Continent In The World

Land or piece of land, including coastlines and any land boundaries that form the edge of a continent. In this context, the term continental Europe (sometimes referred to as “mainland” in the UK) is used to refer to mainland Europe, excluding islands such as Great Britain, Iceland, Ireland and Malta when the term mainland Australia may be used. Refers to mainland Australia, excluding New Guinea, Tasmania and other nearby islands. Similarly, the mainland United States refers to “the 49 states on the North American continent and the District of Columbia (including Alaska but excluding Hawaii)”.

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From a geographic or physical-geographical perspective, a continent can be extended beyond the boundaries of adjacent land to include an adjacent underwater area (continental shelf).

From this perspective, the edge of the continental shelf is the true edge of the continent, as coastlines change with sea level changes.

In this sense, the islands of Great Britain and Ireland are part of Europe, while Australia and the island of New Guinea together form the continent.

As a cultural model, the continental concept can go beyond the continental shelf to include oceanic islands and continental fragments. Thus, Iceland is considered part of Europe and Madagascar is considered part of Africa. Some geographers take the concept to an extreme by placing the landmasses of Australia and other Pacific islands into a single “subcontinent” called Oceania. This divides the Earth’s land surface into continents or semi-continents.

High Resolution World Map

Due to historical guidelines and practical use, the criteria for each room being vacant is usually relaxed. Of the world’s seven most recognizable continents, only Antarctica and Australia are completely separated from the rest of the world by an ocean. The different continents are not defined as separate entities, but as “several or non-separate countries”.

Africa and Asia are connected by the Isthmus of Suez and North America and South America by the Isthmus of Panama. In both cases, these countries cannot be completely separated by water (apart from the Suez Canal and the Panama Canal, which are also narrow, shallow, and man-made). Both isthmuses are very narrow compared to the land mass connecting them.

In the seven-continent model, North America and South America are treated as separate continents. However, they can also be seen as a continent known as the Americas. This view was common in the United States until World War II and still appears in examples from six Asian continents.

Which Is The Second Largest Continent In The World

Continental style is a common concept in France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Portugal, Spain and South American countries.

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The uneven terrain criterion is completely ignored if the contiguous Eurasian landmasses are classified as two separate continents (Asia and Europe). Physiologically, Europe and the Indian subcontinent make up the bulk of the Eurasian landmass. However, Europe is considered a relatively large continent with an area of ​​10,180,000 square kilometers (3,930,000 sq mi), while the Indian subcontinent, which covers less than half of that area, is considered a small continent. An alternative view – in geology and geography – that Eurasia is a single continent leads to the six-continent view. Others see the division of Eurasia into Asia and Europe as a relic of Eurocentrism: “In physical, cultural and historical diversity, China and India are compared to countries on the European continent, not to a single European country. […] “

However, for historical and cultural reasons, the perception of Europe as a separate continent persists in almost all categories.

If the entire continent is defined as a single, inclusive landmass, then Africa, Asia, and Europe form a single continent known as Afro-Eurasia.

Together with the inclusion of the Americas, this would create a four-continent structure that includes Afro-Eurasia, the Americas, Antarctica, and Australia.

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Due to low sea levels during the Pleistocene glaciations, large areas of the continental shelf were exposed as land, forming a land bridge between Tasmania and mainland Australia.

At that time, Australia and New Guinea were a contiguous continent known as Sahul. Similarly, Afro-Eurasia and the Americas were connected by the Bering Land Bridge. Other islands, such as Great Britain, were attached to the mainland of their continents. At that time, there were only three landmasses in the world: Africa-Eurasia-America, Antarctica and Australia-New Guinea (Sahul).

In English-speaking countries, geographers often use the term Oceania to denote the geographic region that includes many Pacific island countries and territories, including mainland Australia.

Which Is The Second Largest Continent In The World

In some non-Greek-speaking countries, such as China, Poland, and Russia, Oceania is considered a true continent because their equivalent word for “continent” has a different meaning that can mean “a large body of land with islands”. based on area side) rather than “land associated with a larger country” (land side).

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For a more detailed list of population by region and subcontinent, see List of continents and subregions by population.

The table below lists the areas assigned to each continent by Cyclopedia Britannica according to the continent-save model, including Australasia with Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia as parts of Oceania. It also shows the number of continents according to the 2021 estimates of the United Nations Statistics Department under the United Nations Plan, including the whole of Egypt (including Suez and the Sinai Peninsula) as part of Africa, the whole of Armia, Azerbaijan. , Cyprus, Georgia, Indonesia, Kazakhstan and Turkey (including Eastern Thrace) as parts of Asia, all of Russia (including Siberia) as part of Europe, Panama and the entire United States (including Hawaii) as parts of North America. , and all of Chile (including Easter Island) as part of South America.

In addition to the present continents, the scope and meaning of the term continent includes the geological past. Supercontinents, often the earliest evidence in the geological record, are the land areas with the most cranes or continental crust on Earth.

These include Valbara, Courland, Columbia, Rodinia, Pannotia and Pangea. Over time, these large continents broke up into large land masses that formed the Perast continents.

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Some parts of continents are known as subcontinents, especially large parts that are separated from the main landmass of the continent by geographic features. The best known example is the Indian subcontinent.

Arabian Peninsula, Southern Cone of South America and Alaska in North America can be considered as further examples.

In many of these cases, the “continents” in question are on separate tectonic plates from the rest of the continents, giving the term geological validity.

Which Is The Second Largest Continent In The World

Widely considered the world’s largest island on the northeastern edge of the North American plate, Greenland is sometimes referred to as a subcontinent.

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