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Great circle

A **great circle**, also known as an **orthodrome** or Riemannian circle, of a sphere is the intersection of the sphere and a plane which passes through the center point of the sphere. This partial case of a circle of a sphere is opposed to a *small circle*, the intersection of the sphere and a plane which does not pass through the center. Any diameter of any great circle coincides with a diameter of the sphere, and therefore all great circles have the same circumference as each other, and have the same center as the sphere. A great circle is the largest circle that can be drawn on any given sphere. Every circle in Euclidean 3-space is a great circle of exactly one sphere.

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