Difference between a Rhombus and a Parallelogram

Updated on May 31, 2017

We may not normally use the words “rhombus” and “parallelogram,” but we actually see these shapes every day. Do you still remember what they are? For sure, these were discussed in school, but now we ask, “What exactly are they and how are they different from each other?” This article will explore the difference between a rhombus and a parallelogram.

Descriptions

Rhombus
A rhombus

A rhombus, also known as “rhom” or “diamond,” is an equilateral quadrilateral, a term that refers to a figure with four parallel sides (the lines will never intersect even if they continue) with equal lengths. If you take a look at the picture above, you will notice that all sides are the same length (8 cm).

All opposing angles of a rhombus have equal lengths and its adjacent angles are supplementary angles (which means the sum of the two angles is 180°). Moreover, a rhombus’s diagonals are perpendicular to each other; they bisect each other at right angles.

parallelogram
A parallelogram

A parallelogram, on the other hand, is a type of quadrilateral. Its opposing lines are parallel and of equal length. If you take a look at the picture above, you will notice that two opposing lines are 15 cm and the other two are 8 cm.

A parallelogram’s adjacent angles are supplementary and its consecutive angles are equal. Its diagonals bisect each other at an intersection. Examples of a parallelogram are rectangles, squares, and rhombuses.

Rhombus vs Parallelogram

What, then, is the difference between a rhombus and a parallelogram?

Both a rhombus and a parallelogram are quadrilateral figures, which means both are four-sided figures. The main difference is that a parallelogram has two parallel opposing sides which are of equal lengths, whereas a rhombus has four sides that all have equal lengths (all four sides are parallel). In other words, a rhombus is a type of parallelogram with equal sides.

Comparison Chart

RhombusParallelogram
An equilateral quadrilateral; has four parallel sides with equal lengthsHas parallel opposing lines that are of equal length