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How Many Continents Are There?

How many continents? Depends on where you live.

Another question from the reference desk: How many continents are there?

The most common answer is seven. There are seven continents.

Africa

North America

South America

Australia

Europe

Asia

Antarctica

While we tried to pin down a definitive answer, we also learned that there are scientists who consider little old Europe and gigantic Asia as one continent, bringing the count to six. Makes sense, I suppose. They comprise a connected landmass. So, according to some, six continents.

Well then, what about North and South America? That’s one landmass as well. There are places where that is the reason for teaching that there are six continents.

Surprisingly, I was unable to find anyone saying there were only five continents, which would make sense to me if you were combining landmasses. Asia and Europe would be one, North and South America would be one.

How many continents are there in the world? Depends on where you’re at and who’s teaching you.

photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/vulpesfidelis/

 

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