# HOW MANY SECONDS IS 60 MINUTES

You are watching: How many seconds is 60 minutes

Go to:Guardian Unlimited homeUK newsWorld newsComment is free blogSport blogArts & entertainment blogPodcastsIn picturesVideo----------------------Archive searchArts and entertainmentBooksBusinessEducationGuardian.co.ukEnvironmentFilmFootballJobsKatine appealLife and styleMediaGuardian.co.ukMoneyMusicThe ObserverPoliticsScienceShoppingSocietyGuardian.co.ukSportTalkTechnologyTravelBeen there----------------------AudioEmail servicesSpecial reportsThe GuardianThe northernerThe wrap----------------------Advertising guideCompare finance productsCrosswordFeedbackGarden centreGNM press officeGraduateGuardian BookshopGuardianEcostoreGuardianFilmsHeadline serviceHelp / contactsInformationLiving our valuesNewsroomNotes & QueriesReader OffersSoulmates datingStyle guideSyndication servicesTravel offersTV listingsWeatherWeb guidesWorking for us----------------------Guardian AbroadGuardian WeeklyMoney ObserverPublicLearnGuardian back issuesObserver back issuesGuardian Professional

CategoriesNooks and cranniesYesteryearSemantic enigmasThe body beautifulRed tape, white liesSpeculative scienceThis sceptred isleRoot of all evilEthical conundrumsThis sporting lifeStage and screenBirds and the bees RED TAPE, WHITE LIESWhy are there 60 seconds in a minute, 60 minutes in an hour and 24 hours in a day? Who decided on these time divisions? THE DIVISION of the hour into 60 minutes and of the minute into 60 seconds comes from the Babylonians who used a sexagesimal (counting in 60s) system for mathematics and astronomy. They derived their number system from the Sumerians who were using it as early as 3500 BC. The use of 12 subdivisions for day and night, with 60 for hours and minutes, turns out to be much more useful than (say) 10 and 100 if you want to avoid having to use complicated notations for parts of a day. Twelve is divisible by two, three, four, six and 12 itself - whereas 10 has only three divisers - whole numbers that divide it a whole number of times. Sixty has 12 divisers and because 60 = 5 x 12 it combines the advantages of both 10 and 12. In fact both 12 and 60 share the property that they have more divisers than any number smaller than themselves. This doesn"t, of course, explain how this system spread throughout the world. Phil Molyneux, London W2. Add your answer

See more: Why Does Reid Use A Revolver In Criminal Minds, Why Does Dr Reid Carry A Revolver

Privacy policy| Terms & conditions| Advertising guide| A-Z index| Inside guardian.co.uk| About this siteJoin our dating site today