The term meridian comes from the Latin meridies, meaning “midday”; the subsolar point passes through a given meridian at solar noon, midway between the times of sunrise and sunset on that meridian. Likewise, the Sun crosses the celestial meridian at the same time. The same Latin stem gives rise to the terms a.m. (ante meridiem) and p.m. (post meridiem) used to disambiguate hours of the day when utilizing the 12-hour clock.
- ante = before, AM
- post = after, PM
Meridians may be “prime” if they are used in a coordinate system (Prime meridian - Wikipedia):
A prime meridian is the meridian (a line of longitude) in a geographic coordinate system at which longitude is defined to be 0°. Together, a prime meridian and its anti-meridian (the 180th meridian in a 360°-system) form a great circle. This great circle divides a spheroid into two hemispheres. If one uses directions of East and West from a defined prime meridian, then they can be called the Eastern Hemisphere and the Western Hemisphere.