Definitions for Kids


While there is no question that all of the amendments to the United States Constitution are important, there is something particularly significant to the 14th Amendment. If you want to understand why the 14th Amendment is held in such high regard, there are several things about this element to the Constitution that you are going to want to keep in mind.

1. It Defined Rights For Slaves

Ratified in 1868, the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was designed to protect the essential civil rights of slaves freed upon the conclusion of the Civil War. It was designed to address a wide variety of crucial rights, including citizen rights, equal protection through the law, due process, and the requirements of the states in regards to these things.

2. Connections To The Constitution

In terms of the number of words, the 14th Amendment is the longest amendment in the entire U.S. Constitution. The complete text of the amendment spells out the rights of citizens in no uncertain terms. Nonetheless, like many amendments to the constitution, it met with controversy upon its ratification, and it continues to be seen as controversial in some circles to this very day.

3. It Defines Citizenship

In terms of providing a definition to what it means to be a citizen of the United States, there is no question that the 14th Amendment is extraordinarily important. It states in no uncertain terms that someone who is born in the United States is therefore a United States citizen. From there, it stands to reason that this individual would also have the rights of citizens. This amendment made it clear that this concept extended to free slaves.

4. It Established The Requirements Of The States

Prior to the passing of the 14th Amendment, the Supreme Court stated that the Bill of Rights only worked for the federal government, rather than the state governments. The 14th Amendment made it absolutely clear that the states were required to follow the laws of the land established through the Bill of Rights, as well.

5. It Refused To Compensate Slave Owners

There are numerous elements to the 14th Amendment that prove to be absolutely fascinating and essential in equal measures. One of the most interesting aspects to the 14th Amendment concerns compensation to former slave owners. Amendment XIV makes it very clear to everyone indeed that slave owners were not going to be compensated in any regard for the loss of their slaves.


Although the term has become popularized in American history, to the point in which some people believe Americans invented the term, the truth of the matter is that popular sovereignty as an idea has been around for several centuries. To be sure, a popular sovereignty definition is going to focus keenly on American history. However, there is a little more to a definition of popular sovereignty that you are going to want to keep in mind.

1. The Origins Of Popular Sovereignty Go Back To The 17th Century

The modern version of this concept can be traced back to the mid-17th century. The social contracts establishment created by such figures as Thomas Hobbes and John Locke put forth works and ideas that developed into what later became the concept of popular sovereignty. Jean-Jacques Rousseau was the author of The Social Contract. This played a significant role in the creation of popular sovereignty, as well.

2. It Became Popular With Americans

The concept of popular sovereignty proved to be particularly popular with American colonists during the Revolutionary War. It was during this time period that the notion of a sovereignty dictated by a single ruler or monarchy was rejected. Rather, popular sovereignty believed that authority, legality, and legitimacy of governments should be created through the will or consent of the people. Benjamin Franklin ran with the notion established by men like John Locke. Popular sovereignty would form the foundation for the colonists wished to achieve.

3. It Was A Major Influence On The Declaration Of Independence

Not surprisingly, this concept proved to have a considerable measure of influence on the creation of the Declaration of Independence. It is popular sovereignty that emphasizes the notion that all people are deserving of rights such as Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness. There is no question that the relationship between popular sovereignty and the formation of the United States is a profound one.

4. It Is The First Of The Seven Principles Of The Constitution

The popular sovereignty idea proved to be crucial in defining what the United States of America was going to offer, what it was going to mean, and what it was going to do about its people. It is the first of the Seven Principles of the Constitution. However, looking at the other six will reveal something interesting.

5. The Influence Is Everywhere

If you look over the other six principles, you will notice that popular sovereignty influences all of them.


When it comes to the distributive property in mathematics, you’re talking about something that is extremely important to math as a whole. Once you have learned more about the concept of distributive property, you will be able to apply these fundamentals to a wide variety of problems.

1. It Is One Of The Most Frequently Used Properties In Math

Obviously, when it comes to math, we understand that some properties are utilized more than the others. One of the most significant things to keep in mind with the distributive property is that it is one of the most frequently utilized properties in mathematics. In a general sense, the property refers to the distributive property of multiplication.

2. The Most Straightforward Definition

In the end, the best way to learn about the distributive property is to apply the concept to actual examples. However, if you are interested in a straightforward definition of distributive property, there are a couple of simple things you can keep in mind. Basically, this property gives you the ability to multiply sums by multiplying each component separately, before setting about the task of adding your figures.

3. Understanding Basic Examples

The above definition may not be the easiest thing in the world to understand. To that end, consider an example such as 4 (x+2) = 4 X x + 5 X 2. With the distributive property, you can use the 4 to multiply your number to both the x and the 2. This is a fairly simple definition of the distributive property, but it is one that is worth keeping in mind nonetheless. This is a concept that can be applied to a wide variety of mathematical problems. You can use this property to solve very simple problems. By the same token, you can use this property to solve considerably more complex problems, as well.

4. It Is A Very Flexible Concept

One of the neat things about the distributive property is that you are talking about a very flexible concept. Not only can you apply the particulars of this property to numbers, but you can also apply the particulars of this property to expressions, as well.

5. You Can Actually Use The Distributive Property Twice

When we multiply 2 binomials, we are going to utilize this property. However, when we multiply 2 binomials, we are actually using the distributive property two times. This concept is known by the name foiling, and it is particularly prevalent with quadratic equations.


If you are planning to study Geography, there are a number of facts and definitions you are going to want to familiarize yourself with. For example, you are definitely going to want to make it a point to learn more about this Prime Meridian. In terms of a Prime Meridian definition, there are several things that you are going to want to keep in mind.

1. Where Is It Located?

When it comes to learning about this element of Geography, the first thing you are going to want to do is familiarize yourself with the location. You can find this Prime Meridian running through Greenwich England. It is located at 0 latitude.

2. There Wasn’t Always A Prime Meridian

For a very long time, various countries would measure longitude at differing meridian points. France preferred their Paris Meridian, as did the Algerians. As the 1880s came and went, people began to appreciate the potential good of running all measures from a singular meridian.

3. The Odd Relationship To Greenwich

Some people think it’s a little strange that this Prime Meridian runs along Greenwich, England. The truth of the matter is that there is a very good reason for this. Washington D.C. played host in 1884 to a major convention. It was here a Greenwich Meridian became established as the meridian of the planet. There were numerous arguments made for giving the honor to a Greenwich Meridian. However, the most significant reason was perhaps the fact that almost two-thirds of all of the ships of the world were already utilizing charts from it.

4. France Took A Little While To Catch Up

Although a Greenwich Meridian won the voting at the conference in a landslide, a couple of nations were slow to follow along. Forty-one delegates represented twenty-five countries. The voting came down to a staggering 22:1, all of which were in favor of adopting a Greenwich Meridian as a Prime Meridian for the whole of the entire planet. However, both France and Brazil stayed away from the voting process. In fact, France refused to acknowledge that Greenwich Meridian at all! They would hold on until 1911.

5. What Countries Does It Pass Through?

In the Northern Hemisphere, this Prime Meridian passes through a number of locations. The list of countries you can include on the list are the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Algeria, Mali, Burkina, Tongo, and Ghana. In the Southern Hemisphere, the only land mass that this Prime Meridian crosses through is Antarctica.


Mercantilism is an economic theory that developed circa 16th century and was a widespread practice through the 18th century. Most scholars and historians agree with that timeline and also argue that mercantilism doesn’t exist today, that the theory is not relevant and indeed a mistake. Some scholars argue that there are traces of mercantilism in the present day economies of the world.

What is Mercantilism?

Mercantilism is an idea that a nation or kingdom must attain economic superiority and whatever practical and enforceable policies that may be warranted to usher in the same must be developed and implemented. In simpler words, mercantilism calls for a robust domestic economy, more exports than imports, having a balance of trade, sustained agriculture, sufficient population for armies and to have large enough markets and eventually to fill the coffers of the state exchequer to become a richer nation.

The endgame is quite simple. Mercantilism aims for prosperity. The means to achieve that objective are often questionable.

Mercantilism: Illustrated!

Mercantilism advocates setting up trade relations with neighboring countries. One way of expanding this trade network is by colonizing new lands and thus developing new markets. In order to become the preferred trader or to be the only trader in a given market, a nation may forbid its colonies or regions to trade with other regions or kingdoms, there would be monopolization in specific categories or industries, the nation may ban export of essentials or precious items and may even ban import of stuffs that the country doesn’t need and essentially the whole trading industry including domestic produces would be extensively monitored and controlled by the state.

Mercantilism has many benefits as well. Beyond the obvious goal of making the country richer and more prosperous, mercantilism puts enormous focus on production or manufacturing, agriculture, technology, logistics and financial empowerment. States or kingdoms can subsidize industries, agriculture, exports and can also control wages, manufacturing standards and trade policies to favor the growth of the economy. Mercantilism can also lead to maximum use of land, natural resources, available manpower or labor.

Tenets of Mercantilism

As is the case with any theory, economic or in any other discipline, there are some stringent tenets that define it. Mercantilism is a stringent theory. It doesn’t leave much room for speculation or ambiguity. Here are some of the many tenets of mercantilism.

It demands that all usable soil in a country, in other words land, should be used for productive purposes. It could be agriculture, manufacturing or mining. This may be acceptable in theory but it is near impossible in reality. You cannot explore every terrain. There are some regions in almost every country of the world where you can neither grow something nor can you use the land to build something. In theory, it makes sense because the modernized and industrializing European nations at the time, namely France and England, were relatively smaller in size and did not have enough diversity of terrains. It was deemed reasonable and desirable to make use of as much land as possible.

Mercantilism dictates that a country must focus on exporting finished goods and using as much raw materials as possible that are sourced from within the country. There was vehement opposition to importing finished goods or manufactured products. Raw materials are always cheaper than finished products. Even if a country did import a bit of raw materials needed for a particular product, one was always expected to avert importing finished goods.

Mercantilism requires a large population and particularly those who are of working age. This in a way propagated that people should give birth to more children. In those days, circa sixteenth to eighteenth century, machines were not as developed as today. Massive labor forces were quintessential to industrial growth and operations. Larger populations meant larger workforces and also provided more soldiers for armies.

Precious metals cannot be exported according to mercantilism. Anything that is precious or has value must be retained in the country. Only the disposable or what can earn more economically than its value in the country was to be traded.

Dangers of Mercantilism

Mercantilism allows economics to trump all other aspects. Social, cultural, political, humanitarian and ecological aspects are shunned. The focus is solely on the economic progress of a nation, regardless of fallouts. Mercantilism has lead to many wars. It has lead to conflicts within nation states.

Colonization, especially the spree launched by the British, was heavily influenced by mercantilism. In an attempt to further the economic interests of England, the colonists had formulated policies that have ruined several local economies, health and fortunes of the colonized. From hoarding of essentials or basic goods to crippling free trade, mercantilism had wreaked havocs in many parts of the world. It is unsurprising that the theory finds very few takers today.