Difference between a Rhombus and a Square

By: | Updated: Nov-29, 2017

If you have been on the internet looking for articles that explain the difference between a rhombus and a square, you have probably come across articles that say a square is actually a rhombus. Is this correct? And if it is, what is the reason behind it? If it isn’t correct, then what is the difference between a rhombus and a square?

Summary Table

RhombusSquare
Has two opposite internal angles that are equalHas four right angles (90 degrees)
Sides are not perpendicular to one anotherSides are perpendicular to each other

Descriptions

rhombus

A rhombus is a parallelogram that:

  • has four sides of equal length
  • has two sides that are parallel
  • has opposite sides that are parallel
  • has opposite angles that are equal
  • has perpendicular diagonals that are of unequal length
  • has diagonals that form an interior right angle when they meet at the center
  • has opposite angles that are of equal measure

Because of its appearance, a rhombus is also sometimes called a “diamond” or a square that is being pushed over to one side.

square

On the other hand, a square is a type of parallelogram that:

  • has four sides which are all congruent (or of equal length)
  • has four right angles (90 degrees)
  • has diagonals that are of equal length
  • has diagonals that bisect each other at 90 degrees
  • has opposite sides that are parallel with all equal lengths
  • has opposite angles that are also congruent

A square is technically a rhombus (it has parallel sides and perpendicular diagonals that bisect each other). It is also, by definition, a trapezoid, a kite, and a rectangle.

Rhombus vs Square

So if a square is a rhombus, then what is the difference between a rhombus and a square?

Both a rhombus and a square are parallelograms and quadrilaterals (which means they have four sides with parallel opposite sides). The main difference between the two is that, while a rhombus has two opposite internal angles of equal measure, a square has four right angles with equal measure. Additionally, a rhombus does not have sides that are perpendicular to each other, unlike to a square.

In short, a rhombus that has right angles or angles that measure 90 degrees is considered a square. This means that a square is a rhombus, but not all rhombuses are squares.

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