Saturday, August 7, 2010

German-English dictionary of ebb-and-flow terms

The following dictionary lexicographically lists German terms related to the moving tides and provides the corresponding terms typically used in the English literature:

Amphidromie, f.: amphidromy
Ebbe, f.: ebb-tide or low tide
Flut, f.: flood-tide or high tide
Gezeiten, f. pl.: tide(s)
Gezeitenstrom, m.: tidal current
Gezeitentafel, f.: tide table
Nippflut, f.: neap-tide
Springflut, f.: spring-tide
Tide, f.: tide
Tiden, f. pl.: tides or ebb and flow
Tidenhub, m.: tidal height
(Used abbreviations: m. = masculine, f. = feminine, pl. = plural)

The composed nouns Niedrigwasser (“low water”) and Hochwasser (“high water”) are synonyms for the German words Ebbe and Flut. The German phrases ablaufendes Wasser and auflaufendes Wasser refer to the outgoing and incoming tide, respectively.

To learn the German ebb and flow terms in scientific context, the book by Wolfgang Glebe with the title Ebbe und Flut [1] provides a nicely illustrated lecture, which also explains the phenomena of the tides based on physical and geographical facts and observations. In English, I like the chapter entitled The Moving Tides by Rachel Carson in her book The Sea Around Us [2]. This chapter is an excellent narrative of tidal phenomena that certainly will move your mind.

Keywords: oceanography, coastal geography, linguistics, terminolgy, translation

[1] Wolfgang Glebe: Ebbe und Flut. Das Naturphänomen der Gezeiten einfach erklärt. Delius Klasing Verlag, Bielefeld, 1. Auflage 2010.
[2] Rachel L. Carson:
The Sea Around Us. Oxford University Press, New York, 1991 (first issued as paperback; originally published in 1950).

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