The North Sea is a marginal sea of the Atlantic Ocean located between the United Kingdom, Norway, Germany, the Netherlands and France. An epeiric sea on the European continental shelf, it connects to the ocean through the English Channel in the south and the Norwegian Sea in the north, it is more than 970 kilometres long and 580 kilometres wide, with an area of 570,000 square kilometres. The North Sea has long been the site of important European shipping lanes as well as a major fishery; the sea is a popular destination for recreation and tourism in bordering countries and more has developed into a rich source of energy resources including fossil fuels and early efforts in wave power. The North Sea has featured prominently in geopolitical and military affairs in Northern Europe, it was important globally through the power northern Europeans projected worldwide during much of the Middle Ages and into the modern era. The North Sea was the centre of the Vikings' rise. Subsequently, the Hanseatic League, the Netherlands, the British each sought to dominate the North Sea and thus access to the world's markets and resources.
As Germany's only outlet to the ocean, the North Sea continued to be strategically important through both World Wars. The coast of the North Sea presents a diversity of geographical features. In the north, deep fjords and sheer cliffs mark the Norwegian and Scottish coastlines, whereas in the south, the coast consists of sandy beaches and wide mudflats. Due to the dense population, heavy industrialization, intense use of the sea and area surrounding it, there have been various environmental issues affecting the sea's ecosystems. Adverse environmental issues – including overfishing and agricultural runoff and dumping, among others – have led to a number of efforts to prevent degradation of the sea while still making use of its economic potential; the North Sea is bounded by the Orkney Islands and east coast of Great Britain to the west and the northern and central European mainland to the east and south, including Norway, Germany, the Netherlands and France. In the southwest, beyond the Straits of Dover, the North Sea becomes the English Channel connecting to the Atlantic Ocean.
In the east, it connects to the Baltic Sea via the Skagerrak and Kattegat, narrow straits that separate Denmark from Norway and Sweden respectively. In the north it is bordered by the Shetland Islands, connects with the Norwegian Sea, which lies in the north-eastern part of the Atlantic; the North Sea is more than 970 kilometres long and 580 kilometres wide, with an area of 570,000 square kilometres and a volume of 54,000 cubic kilometres. Around the edges of the North Sea are sizeable islands and archipelagos, including Shetland and the Frisian Islands; the North Sea receives freshwater from a number of European continental watersheds, as well as the British Isles. A large part of the European drainage basin empties into the North Sea, including water from the Baltic Sea; the largest and most important rivers flowing into the North Sea are the Elbe and the Rhine – Meuse watershed. Around 185 million people live in the catchment area of the rivers discharging into the North Sea encompassing some industrialized areas.
For the most part, the sea lies on the European continental shelf with a mean depth of 90 metres. The only exception is the Norwegian trench, which extends parallel to the Norwegian shoreline from Oslo to an area north of Bergen, it has a maximum depth of 725 metres. The Dogger Bank, a vast moraine, or accumulation of unconsolidated glacial debris, rises to a mere 15 to 30 m below the surface; this feature has produced the finest fishing location of the North Sea. The Long Forties and the Broad Fourteens are large areas with uniform depth in fathoms; these great banks and others make the North Sea hazardous to navigate, alleviated by the implementation of satellite navigation systems. The Devil's Hole lies 200 miles east of Scotland; the feature is a series of asymmetrical trenches between 20 and 30 kilometres long and two kilometres wide and up to 230 metres deep. Other areas which are less deep are Fisher Bank and Noordhinder Bank; the International Hydrographic Organization defines the limits of the North Sea as follows: On the Southwest.
A line joining the Walde Lighthouse and Leathercoat Point. On the Northwest. From Dunnet Head in Scotland to Tor Ness in the Island of Hoy, thence through this island to the Kame of Hoy on to Breck Ness on Mainland through this island to Costa Head and to Inga Ness in Westray through Westray, to Bow Head, across to Mull Head and on to Seal Skerry and thence to Horse Island. On the North. From the North point of the Mainland of the Shetland Islands, across to Graveland Ness in the Island of Yell, through Yell to Gloup Ness and across to Spoo Ness in Unst island, through Unst to Herma Ness, on to the SW point of the Rumblings and to Muckle Flugga all these being included in the North Sea area.
Mean sea level is an average level of the surface of one or more of Earth's oceans from which heights such as elevation may be measured. MSL is a type of vertical datum – a standardised geodetic datum –, used, for example, as a chart datum in cartography and marine navigation, or, in aviation, as the standard sea level at which atmospheric pressure is measured to calibrate altitude and aircraft flight levels. A common and straightforward mean sea-level standard is the midpoint between a mean low and mean high tide at a particular location. Sea levels can be affected by many factors and are known to have varied over geological time scales; however 20th century and current millennium sea level rise is caused by global warming, careful measurement of variations in MSL can offer insights into ongoing climate change. The term above sea level refers to above mean sea level. Precise determination of a "mean sea level" is difficult to achieve because of the many factors that affect sea level. Instantaneous sea level varies quite a lot on several scales of space.
This is because the sea is in constant motion, affected by the tides, atmospheric pressure, local gravitational differences, salinity and so forth. The easiest way this may be calculated is by selecting a location and calculating the mean sea level at that point and use it as a datum. For example, a period of 19 years of hourly level observations may be averaged and used to determine the mean sea level at some measurement point. Still-water level or still-water sea level is the level of the sea with motions such as wind waves averaged out. MSL implies the SWL further averaged over a period of time such that changes due to, e.g. the tides have zero mean. Global MSL refers to a spatial average over the entire ocean. One measures the values of MSL in respect to the land. In the UK, the Ordnance Datum is the mean sea level measured at Newlyn in Cornwall between 1915 and 1921. Prior to 1921, the vertical datum was MSL at the Victoria Liverpool. Since the times of the Russian Empire, in Russia and other former its parts, now independent states, the sea level is measured from the zero level of Kronstadt Sea-Gauge.
In Hong Kong, "mPD" is a surveying term meaning "metres above Principal Datum" and refers to height of 1.230m below the average sea level. In France, the Marégraphe in Marseilles measures continuously the sea level since 1883 and offers the longest collapsed data about the sea level, it is used for main part of Africa as official sea level. As for Spain, the reference to measure heights below or above sea level is placed in Alicante. Elsewhere in Europe vertical elevation references are made to the Amsterdam Peil elevation, which dates back to the 1690s. Satellite altimeters have been making precise measurements of sea level since the launch of TOPEX/Poseidon in 1992. A joint mission of NASA and CNES, TOPEX/Poseidon was followed by Jason-1 in 2001 and the Ocean Surface Topography Mission on the Jason-2 satellite in 2008. Height above mean sea level is the elevation or altitude of an object, relative to the average sea level datum, it is used in aviation, where some heights are recorded and reported with respect to mean sea level, in the atmospheric sciences, land surveying.
An alternative is to base height measurements on an ellipsoid of the entire Earth, what systems such as GPS do. In aviation, the ellipsoid known as World Geodetic System 84 is used to define heights; the alternative is to use a geoid-based vertical datum such as NAVD88. When referring to geographic features such as mountains on a topographic map, variations in elevation are shown by contour lines; the elevation of a mountain denotes the highest point or summit and is illustrated as a small circle on a topographic map with the AMSL height shown in metres, feet or both. In the rare case that a location is below sea level, the elevation AMSL is negative. For one such case, see Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. To extend this definition far from the sea means comparing the local height of the mean sea surface with a "level" reference surface, or geodetic datum, called the geoid. In a state of rest or absence of external forces, the mean sea level would coincide with this geoid surface, being an equipotential surface of the Earth's gravitational field.
In reality, due to currents, air pressure variations and salinity variations, etc. this does not occur, not as a long-term average. The location-dependent, but persistent in time, separation between mean sea level and the geoid is referred to as ocean surface topography, it varies globally in a range of ± 2 m. Adjustments were made to sea-level measurements to take into account the effects of the 235 lunar month Metonic cycle and the 223-month eclipse cycle on the tides. Several terms are used to describe the changing relationships between sea level and dry land; when the term "relative" is used, it means change relative to a fixed point in the sediment pile. The term "eustatic" refers to global changes in sea level relative to a fixed point, such as the centre of the earth, for example as a result of melting ice-caps; the term "steric" refers to global changes in sea level due to thermal expansion and salinity variations. The term "isostatic" refers to changes in
The Ergolz is the main river in the canton of Basel-Landschaft, Switzerland. It rises on Mount Geisflue in the Faltenjura mountains in the upper region of Basel-Landschaft, on the border with Aargau and Solothurn, joins the Rhine at Augst. Among the tributaries of the Ergolz are Eibach, Diegterbach, Orisbach, Röserenbach and Violenbach. Since 1934 the water level and discharge of the Ergolz have been measured at Liestal. During these more than 70 years, the average flow towards the Rhine was 3.73 cubic metres per second. During 2006, the average flow was 5.63 cubic metres per second. The peak in that year was on 10 April 2006, at 134 cubic metres per second; the extreme values measured at Liestal were a minimum of 0.1 cubic metres per second and a maximum of 155 cubic metres per second. The river supplied drinking water to the Roman city of Augusta Raurica. To this end, an aqueduct was constructed. Parts of the aqueduct still stand today. Two places where the aqueduct can be visited and walked today, are in the Heidenloch district of Liestal and north-east of the sewage treatment plant in Füllinsdorf.
The Ergolz was polluted during the first half of the 20th century. From 1960 onwards, pollution was countered by the construction of sewage treatment plants. Measurement data of the Federal Office for the Environment from 2006 Ergolz in German and Italian in the online Historical Dictionary of Switzerland. Water in the Jura mountains
The Aare or Aar is a tributary of the High Rhine and the longest river that both rises and ends within Switzerland. Its total length from its source to its junction with the Rhine comprises about 295 kilometres, during which distance it descends 1,565 m, draining an area of 17,779 km2 entirely within Switzerland, accounting for close to half the area of the country, including all of Central Switzerland. There are more than 40 hydroelectric plants along the course of the Aare River; the river's name dates to at least the La Tène period, it is attested as Nantaror "Aare valley" in the Berne zinc tablet. The name was Latinized as Arula/Arola/Araris; the Aare rises in the great Aargletschers of the Bernese Alps, in the canton of Bern and west of the Grimsel Pass. The Finsteraargletscher and Lauteraargletscher come together to form the Unteraargletscher, the main source of water for the Grimselsee; the Oberaargletscher feeds the Oberaarsee, which flows into the Grimselsee. The Aare leaves the Grimselsee just to the east to the Grimsel Hospiz, below the Grimsel Pass, flows northwest through the Haslital, forming on the way the magnificent Handegg Waterfall, 46 m, past Guttannen.
Right after Innertkirchen it is joined by the Gamderwasser. Less than 1 kilometre the river carves through a limestone ridge in the Aare Gorge, it is here that the Aare proves itself to be more than just a river, as it attracts thousands of tourists annually to the causeways through the gorge. A little past Meiringen, near Brienz, the river expands into Lake Brienz. Near the west end of the lake it indirectly receives its first important tributary, the Lütschine, by the Lake of Brienz, it runs across the swampy plain of the Bödeli between Interlaken and Unterseen before flowing into Lake Thun. Near the west end of Lake Thun, the river indirectly receives the waters of the Kander, which has just been joined by the Simme, by the Lake of Thun. Lake Thun marks the head of navigation. On flowing out of the lake it passes through Thun, flows through the city of Bern, passing beneath eighteen bridges and around the steeply-flanked peninsula on which the Old City of Berne is located; the river soon changes its northwesterly flow for a due westerly direction, but after receiving the Saane or La Sarine it turns north until it nears Aarberg.
There, in one of the major Swiss engineering feats of the 19th century, the Jura water correction, the river, which had rendered the countryside north of Bern a swampland through frequent flooding, was diverted by the Aare-Hagneck Canal into the Lac de Bienne. From the upper end of the lake, at Nidau, the river issues through the Nidau-Büren Canal called the Aare Canal, runs east to Büren; the lake absorbs huge amounts of eroded gravel and snowmelt that the river brings from the Alps, the former swamps have become fruitful plains: they are known as the "vegetable garden of Switzerland". From here the Aare flows northeast for a long distance, past the ambassador town Solothurn, Olten, near, the junction with the Suhre, Wildegg, where the Seetal Aabach falls in on the right. A short distance further, below Brugg it receives first the Reuss, its major tributary, shortly afterwards the Limmat, its second strongest tributary, it now turns to north, soon becomes itself a tributary of the Rhine, which it surpasses in volume when the two rivers unite downstream from Koblenz, opposite Waldshut in Germany.
The Rhine, in turn, empties into the North Sea after crossing into the Netherlands. Limmat Reppisch Sihl Alp Minster Lake Zurich Linthkanal Lake Walen Linth Löntsch Sernf Flätschbach Seez Reuss Lorze Kleine Emme Lake Lucerne Sarner Aa Engelberger Aa Muota Schächen Chärstelenbach Göschener Reuss Aabach Bünz Suhre Wyna Aabach Stegbach Dünnern Wigger Murg Rot Langete Ursenbach Rotbach Emme Lake of Bienne La Suze Zihlkanal Lake of Neuchatel La Broye Zihl/La Thielle L'Orbe Le Talent Saane/La Sarine Sense Gürbe Zulg Lake Thun Kander Simme Entschlige Lake Brienz Lütschine Gadmerwasser Lake Grimsel, 1,908 metres Lake Brienz, 564 metres Lake Thun, 558 metres Lake Wohlen, 481 metres Niederriedsee, 461 metres Lake Biel, 429 metres Klingnauer Stausee, 318 metres Anon. Atlas Routier et Touristique. Paris, France: Bordas-Tirade. Bridgwater, W.. "Aare". The Columbia-Viking Desk Encyclopedia. New York, NY: Columbia University Press. ISBN 978-0670230709. Cohen, Saul B. ed.. "Aare". The Columbia Gazetteer of the World.
New York, NY: Columbia University Press. ISBN 0-231-11040-5. Forbiger, Albert. Handbuch Der Alten Geographie. 3. Leipzig, Germany: Veriag von Gustav Mayer. Gresswell, R. Kay. Standard Encyclopedia of the World's Rivers and Lakes. New York, NY: G. P. Putnam's Sons. Hoib
Thur is a 131-kilometre-long river in north-eastern Switzerland. Its source is near the mountain Säntis in the south-east of the canton of St. Gallen. In this canton it flows through the town Wil. After Wil it flows through the canton of its capital Frauenfeld; the final 19 kilometres of the Thur are in the canton of Zürich. It flows into the river Rhine on the border with Germany, south of Schaffhausen
Sursilvan is a group of dialects of the Romansh language spoken in the Swiss district of Surselva. It is the most spoken variety of Romansh with 17,897 people within the Surselva District naming Romansh as a habitually spoken language in the Swiss census of 2000; the most related variety is Sutsilvan, spoken in the area located to the east of the district. The name of the dialect and the Surselva District is derived from sur'above' and selva'forest', with the forest in question being the Uaul Grond in the area affected by the Flims Rockslide; the word selva itself has fallen out of use in modern Sursilvan, with the most common word for forest being uaul, an Old High German loanword. Selva is only used for in a few more recent terms such as selvicultura'forestry', selvicultur'forest officer', or cavrer selvadi'Long-eared owl'. Sursilvan is used across most of the Surselva District, with the exception of the Walser villages of Obersaxen, Vals, St. Martin and Safiental. Outside of the Surselva District, Flims is part of the Sursilvan dialect area.
In addition, Sursilvan was used as the written Romansh language of parts of the Sutsilvan dialect area. When a separate Sutsilvan written language was introduced in 1944, the villages of Bonaduz, Rhäzün s, Domat/Ems and Trin retained Sursilvan as their written language. In addition, Sursilvan was used in the Surmiran dialect area as the language of church, but has now been replaced by Standard Surmiran and Rumantsch Grischun. Most municipalities in which Sursilvan is the traditional language still have a Romansh-speaking majority today; the exceptions are Flims, Schnaus, Castrisch and Duvin. In all of these, except for Flims, however, a majority of people reported in the 2000 Swiss census to use Romansh daily if only a minority named it as their language of best command. In about half of the Sursilvan villages, Romansh is the language of best command of over 70% or 80%; the highest percentage is found in Vrin with over 95%. As a daily language, it is used in nearly all municipalities by at least 70%, in about half by more than 80%, in a third by over 90%.
Overall across the Sursilvan dialect area, in the census of 2000, 70.1% named Romansh as a habitually used language, while 58.3% named it as their language of best command. Sursilvan spelling follows a phonemic system. Sursilvan nouns distinguish two numbers. Nouns in -a are overwhelmingly feminine. Nouns in consonants or other vowels can be either feminine. Plurals are formed with the suffix -s. Nouns ending in -s do not add this plural ending, but nouns in -z and -sch follow the general rule. Nominalised past participles in -au have a plural in -ai. In addition, nouns may show vowel alternations or other irregularities: In addition to the normal plural in -s many nouns show a collective plural in -a; these forms occur with natural substances and human body parts. Syntactically these collective plurals behave like feminine singular nouns: La crappa ei dira.'The rocks are hard. / The rock is hard.' and may best be considered as an intermediate formation between inflection and derivation. Sursilvan has both an indefinite article.
These agree with their noun in gender and number. Forms may differ depending on whether the following word starts with a vowel or a consonant: The definite article contracts with a number of prepositions: The adjective agrees with its noun in gender and number and follows it. A peculiarity of Sursilvan is that the adjective distinguishes an attributive and a predicative form in the masculine singular: in um vegl'an old man'igl um ei vegls'the man is old' The predicative masculine singular form is morphologically identical with the masculine plural; the ending of the masculine plural is -s. Feminine adjectives suffix -a in the singular and -as in the plural; the attributive masculine singular differs from the other forms in its vocalism. Modern Sursilvan has no unstressed proclitic personal pronouns appearing in preverbal position and only uses the stressed forms, which appear in the same position as nouns: jeu hai viu el'I have seen him'. In the 1Sg and 2Sg the special dative forms mi and ti exist, which are used after the preposition a'to'.
In the 3Sg agli is used instead of ad el. In the 3rd person Sursilvan has a neuter pronoun ei: ei plova'it rains', igl ei tard'it is late'; this pronoun is used as an expletive pronoun in sentences like ei vegn ora in drag cun siat tgaus'there emerges a dragon with seven heads'. The same form can be used with 3Pl verb forms as a gender-neutral'they/people': ei dian'they/people say'; the proximal pronoun quel'this' and the distal pronoun tschel'that' have different forms in the masc. sg. depending on whether they are used adjectivally with a noun or pronominally on their own: El va vitier quei um vegl, e quel gi...'he goes to this old man, this one says...'. Quel and tschel have pronominal neuter forms tschei. Quest, which in other Rhetoromance dialects serves as proximal demonstrative, is in modern Sursilvan limited to fixed expression such quest onn'this year', questa sera'this evening'. Bernardi, Rut, & H. Stri
Canton of Grisons
The canton of Grisons, or canton of Graubünden, is the largest and easternmost canton of Switzerland. It has international borders with Italy and Liechtenstein, its German name, Graubünden, translates as the "Grey Leagues", referring to the canton's origin in three local alliances, the League of God's House, the Grey League, the League of the Ten Jurisdictions. Grisons is home to three of Switzerland's ethnic groups, whose spoken languages—Swiss German and Romansh—are all native to the canton, it is the only trilingual canton and the only canton where the Romansh language has official status. Grisons is Switzerland's largest canton by area at 7,105.2 square kilometres, 19.2% larger than the Canton of Bern. Only about a third of this is regarded as productive land of which forests cover about a fifth of the total area; the canton is mountainous, comprising the highlands of the Rhine and Inn river valleys. In its southeastern part lies the only official Swiss National Park. In its northern part the mountains were formed as part of the thrust fault, in 2008 declared a geologic UNESCO World Heritage Site, under the name Swiss Tectonic Arena Sardona.
Another Biosphere Reserve is the Biosfera Val Müstair adjacent to the Swiss National Park, while Ela Nature Park is one of the regionally supported parks. Elevations in the Grison Alps include Tödi, at 3,614 metres, the highest peak, Piz Bernina, at 4,049 metres. Many of the mountain ranges feature extensive glaciers, such as at the Adula, the Albula, the Silvretta, the Bernina, the Bregaglia and the Rätikon ranges; the mountain ranges in the central area are steep, having some of the deepest valleys in Europe. These valleys were settled by the Raetians. Grisons borders on the cantons of St. Gallen to the north, Glarus to the north-west, Uri to the west, Ticino to the south-west; the capital city is Chur. The world-famous resorts of St. Moritz and Davos-Klosters are located in the canton, complemented by the larger all-year-round tourist destinations of Arosa, Lenzerheide, Scuol-Sammnaun and more; the inhabitants of Grisons are called Grisonians. Most of the lands of the canton were once part of a Roman province called Raetia, established in 15 BC.
The current capital of Grisons, was known as Curia in Roman times. The area was part of the lands of the diocese of Chur. In 1367 the League of God's House was founded to resist the rising power of the Bishop of Chur; this was followed by the establishment of the Grey League, sometimes called Oberbund, in 1395 in the Upper Rhine valley. The name Grey League is derived from the homespun grey clothes worn by the people and was used after 16 March 1424; the name of this league gave its name to the canton of Grisons. A third league was established in 1436 by the people of ten bailiwicks in the former Toggenburg countship, as the dynasty of Toggenburg had become extinct; the league was called League of the Ten Jurisdictions. The first step towards the canton of Grisons was when the league of the Ten Jurisdictions allied with the League of God's House in 1450. In 1471 the two leagues allied with the Grey League. In 1497 and 1498 the Leagues allied with the Old Swiss Confederacy after the Habsburgs acquired the possessions of the extinct Toggenburg dynasty in 1496, siding with the Confederacy in the Swabian War three years later.
The Habsburgs were defeated at Calven Gorge and Dornach, helping the Swiss Confederation and the allied leagues of the canton of Grisons to be recognised. However the Three Leagues remained a loose association until the Bundesbrief of 23 September 1524; the last traces of the Bishop of Chur's jurisdiction were abolished in 1526. The Musso war of 1520 drove the Three Leagues closer to the Swiss Confederacy. Between 1618 and 1639 it became a battleground between competing factions during the Bündner Wirren; the Protestant party was supported by France and Venice, while the Catholic party was supported by the Habsburgs in Spain and Austria. Each side sought to gain control of the Grisons to gain control over the important alpine passes. In 1618, the young radical Jörg Jenatsch became a member of the court of'clerical overseers' and a leader of the anti-Habsburg faction, he supervised the torture to death of the arch-priest Nicola Rusca of Sondrio. In response, Giacomo Robustelli of the pro-Catholic Planta family, raised an army of rebels in the Valtellina.
On the evening of 18/19 July 1620, a force of Valtellina rebels supported by Austrian and Italian troops marched into Tirano and began killing Protestants. When they finished in Tirano, they marched to Teglio and further down the valley killing every Protestant that they found. Between 500 and 600 people were killed in the following four days; the attack drove nearly all the Protestants out of the valley, prevented further Protestant incursions and took the Valtellina out of the Three Leagues. In response, in February 1621, Jenatsch led a force of anti-Habsburg troops to attack Rietberg Castle, the home of a leader of the pro-Catholic faction, Pompeius Planta, they surprised Planta and according to legend he was killed by Jörg Jenatsch with an axe. The murder of Planta encouraged the Protestant faction and they assembled a poorly led and disorganized army to retake the Valtellina and other subject lands. However, the army fell apart; this Protestant invasion provided the Austrians an excuse to invade the Leagues.
By the end of October and Austria had occupied all of Grisons. The resulting peace treaty of January 1622, forced Grisons to cede the Müstair, the Lower Engadine