Difference Between Row and Column

Key Difference: The key difference is that a row is horizontally arranged in a straight line from left to right, while a column is vertically divided from top to bottom. In Excel-sheet a row is numerically valued while a column is alphabetically tagged like A1 cell in the sheet that shows A as column and 1 as the row.

Row and Column​​​A row is a noun with the basic definition of row being a number of things or people arranged in more or less straight horizontal line, while a column also noun which is a vertically arranged list. 

The origin of the word row is from Old English rowan of Germanic origin; related to rudder; from an Indo-European root shared by Latin remus 'oar', Greek eretmon 'oar', while the origin of column came from Middle English Rowcolumne from Latin columna. A row goes length-wise across the field or over the water and a column is measured height-wise. By default Excel uses letters for column and numbers to label the row. A row is precise and specific with information about certain thing like gender, age, marks while a column consists of similar information but in a more broader concept with everything listed.

In context to relational database, where row is also called as tuple will have a single data item in a table like for example, where a table represents data regarding companies then each row will represent one single company Columnname. Columns might represent things like company name, address and other relevant data. In a spreadsheet, rows are from left to right on a level plane, while a column is vertically from top to bottom from max. to min. In general usage rows and columns are generally most used in Excel or Spreadsheet and is also commonly used as sitting arrangement more specifically in a theatre with row either numerically or alphabetically labeled and a column is more used to denote the style of pillars in designing or a vertical list in a table or daily paper articles divided in a column structure. Column is a single stack of cells, whereas a row is a single string of cells.

Comparison between Row and Column:






  • A horizontal line of entries in a table.

  • A street with a continuous of houses along one or both its sides.


A vertical data list in a table.​


A row in a theatre or in a classroom.

A column in an application form .


Row is generally numbered.

While column is labeled alphabetically or by letters.


From left to right.

From top to bottom.


Describes data specifically like a company's names -XYZ.

While a column will have general data like Companies which will be more precisely mentioned in a row.

Image Courtesy: Idoceonline.com, Lifewire.com, Quora.com

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